Five life lessons for us all - in memory of Jedidiah Lusk

A parent shares words of wisdom in memory of her son...

Editor’s note:Jedidiah Lusk was just 9 when he died of a brain tumor Jan. 3, 2011. When his classmates graduated from Pioneer-Quincy Elementary School last Thursday evening he was with them — in a dedication printed in their program, in a special chair placed near their seats, and in the words of his mother, Cynthia Lusk, one of the speakers. Lusk talked briefly about her son and his accomplishments and then presented five lessons to the children that she said he would want to share — the first inspired by a sign he saw during a trip sponsored by the Make a Wish Foundation. The following are excerpts from her speech, which we think are worth sharing, and pertinent at any age.

Cynthia Lusk

First point: Life is short; eat dessert first. And Jedidiah adopted that motto for the rest of his life. So that is my first point. Appreciate what you have, when you have it. It is OK to enjoy the moment!

Second point: Be kind to each other. Continue to show the same kindness throughout your life, that you showed to Jedidiah, here at school when he returned after cancer treatments. His hair fell out, his body doubled in weight, and he came back in a wheelchair. He was pretty much unrecognizable from the little boy everybody knew in Mrs. Lemnah’s third-grade class. But not once did I ever hear any child in this school make fun of Jedidiah. You all showed kindness and respect to him.

Third point: When you are climbing the ladder of life, pull others up with you! On the ladder of life, everyone climbs at their own rate. If your buddies below you need assistance, don’t hesitate to help. Don’t worry if others climb higher or faster than you; encourage them anyway. Maybe they got a better grade than you, or made the position on that sports team that you really wanted, but did not get. But remember, those are the ones who will be pulling you up later on, when you need it most! Don’t be jealous. Simply encourage others, all the time!

Fourth point: Life is not fair! Don’t expect it to be. Don’t waste time whining and complaining that life is not fair. Get over it and move on. Jedidiah and I spoke about that a lot. Personally, we agreed that God is in control, and He knows the overall “Big Picture.” But we don’t always get to see all the pieces to the puzzles at one time … so we don’t always understand what is happening at the present time. But don’t worry about it; Jedidiah did not. He put his trust in Jesus Christ and let God be in control.

Fifth point: Help without being asked. Take the initiative to help your parents around the house. Taking responsibility in your life is very important! It is a huge part of growing up. There is a lot to learn about life. Helping other people and giving of yourself is essential for your success. Think about this … if everything works out well for you — in six short years you will be graduating high school seniors and well on your way to becoming full-fledged adults. We welcome you! 


Eastern Plumas Health Care will survive

Where I Stand by 
Linda Satchwell
Public Relations Coordinator
Eastern Plumas Health Care

It’s been six months since Eastern Plumas Health Care heard that a 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling meant the huge rate cuts to our skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) would go into effect after all. The state of California would, indeed, balance its budget on the backs of its most vulnerable and needy citizens — the elderly and disabled. 

Much has been written about the unfairness of this decision. Words spelling out the tragedy set in motion by these cuts and resultant closure of our skilled nursing residents’ homes, their transfer to distant cities and loss of the lifeline that family and friends provides have not been able to dent the opinion of legislators focused on numbers and dollar signs. In short, appeals to the heart, humanity or what is simply right don’t translate in this arena.

Read more: Eastern Plumas Health Care will survive


My life in cruise control

My Turn by Carolyn Carter

  I think we all have something to say about the pesky Plumas County cops. I’ve noticed that if any conversation is lacking in fervor all one has to do is say “Well, I got pulled over a couple of weeks ago …” and it starts a conversation that has legs that can last for miles.

  Well, I got pulled over a couple of weeks ago, and a couple of weeks before that too. I am now the recipient of two crushingly expensive speeding tickets.

Read more: My life in cruise control


Protect our creeks this summer

  We all love to swim in and enjoy the creeks that surround our communities during the warm summer months. While we are recreating in our beautiful county we should be conscious of the effect we are having on the area for other users and for wildlife.

  This past week, while on a walk with some friends, I noticed someone had driven up and down Spanish Creek and the beach near the big pullout off Beskeen Lane.

Read more: Protect our creeks this summer


Succumbing to the romanticism of pioneers and the call of the wild

My Turn
Laura Beaton


  Last week I went to take pictures of the fourth-graders enjoying Living History Day at the museum in Quincy. They were dressed up in pioneer costume, doing all kinds of pioneering activities like baking biscuits in a woodstove oven and churning butter.

  They learned to sew buttons, pan for gold, make drip candles, wash laundry using a washboard and make jerky.

Read more: Succumbing to the romanticism of pioneers and the call of the wild


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