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Passion on display

It was a special experience to cover the Landfill Community Meeting on Sunday, organized by the Cumberland County Landfill Awareness group. Going into the event, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, but honestly, I figured it would be well attended.

My co-worker, Staff Writer Emily Hollingsworth, has been covering this developing story in Cumberland, and everything I had seen from her coverage demonstrated that there was a passionate and vocal group of people opposed to the Green Ridge landfill facility. My expectation was met as approximately 100 people were in attendance Sunday.

Naturally since I’m a sports editor, I’m in the habit of covering sporting events that may take place on week/work nights or weekends, and it is readily obvious to me why people flock to those events. Generally their children or family members are involved, and they are there to support them, or they are on hand because of the overall entertainment value of athletic competition. But I was not covering a sporting event July 22, and it struck me that the large group of people that came together on a Sunday afternoon to discuss a landfill were really passionate about their county.

When members of the Cumberland County Landfill Awareness group had completed their presentations, they had essentially filled all of the hour and a half allotted for the meeting, so Christal Schools, who helped run the event, gave people the option to leave if they needed to before the question-and-answer session began. To her pleasant surprise, no one needed to race off.

There was a significant echo in the facility where the group was meeting, amplifying the sound of even hushed side conversations, so care had to be taken to ensure speakers were heard. On several occasions, some in attendance intervened, asking for silence so they could follow what was being presented.

Most of the time in life, sacrifice is essential in the course of protecting and aiding the things one cares about. This group sacrificed part of its weekend and showed interest in participating further in the service of its cause.

There are strong opinions on both sides of the landfill issue, but regardless of your perspective, I thought the passion these citizens showed for their county was commendable.

TITUS MOHLER is the sports editor for The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia, LLC. His email address is Titus.Mohler@FarmvilleHerald.com.