Quick takes – November 19

Honor deserved

Want to know a good example of a student-athlete? Columbus East senior Courtney VanLiew is just that.

She competes for the school’s volleyball, swimming and track teams and maintains a 4.2 grade-point average. VanLiew also is a member of the National Honor Society and is involved in mentoring and student leadership programs.

It’s appropriate then that she has been named one of 10 national finalists for the Wendy’s High School Heisman award and will travel to New York for the televised Dec. 11 selection event. She is deserving of this recognition because of the hard work she has put in athletically and academically, which is a great example for others.

Support appreciated

The annual Reverse Raffle that supports the VIMCare Clinic for the uninsured and Medicaid patients generated $158,500 on Nov. 11 — $8,000 better than its goal.

That strong support is appreciated because the clinic fills an important role in the community. Even with a significant change in the business plan for Volunteers in Medicine, now known as the VIMCare Clinic and located at Columbus Regional Hospital, there was a tremendous outpouring of support.

This is a good sign — a sign that the community recognizes an important need and supports the clinic’s mission. Kudos to those who contributed financially or with their time and talents.

Nice gesture

One of the biggest moments in the life of Northside Middle School student Alana Cook was July 7, when she learned that she was pronounced cancer free from the effects of a brain tumor that was discovered in the fall of 2015. Another special one occurred Oct. 26.

The University of Notre Dame women’s basketball team hosted Cook that day at their practice. She met the players and coaches, watched practice, was given a tour and also presented with an “honorary letter of intent” to be part of the program. The surprise was organized by former Columbus North High School standout Ali Patberg, a Notre Dame redshirt freshman who got to know Alana through the summer team her father Ron Patberg coached and for which Alana played.

Patberg, the 2015 Indiana Miss Basketball, forged a close friendship with Cook, serving as a mentor in some ways. It was Patberg’s idea to have the team host Cook. What resulted was a heartwarming moment that helped lift Alana’s spirits and create a wonderful memory.