This weekend, Cottonwood resident George Skoblin will be laid to rest in a service Saturday, Sept. 24, at Westcott Funeral Home.

On Feb. 10, we published in all three of our newspapers a letter to the editor Skoblin sent us about his life suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, aka Lou Gehrig’s disease, an incurable progressive neurodegenerative disease in which the mind remains intact, but the body’s functions systematically begin to shut down. Given treatment like feeding tubes and breathing machines, ALS sufferers can survive for years before the body simply fails leading to death, most likely from asphyxiation.

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Last week, the Sedona-Oak Creek School District staved off what would have been one of the most unusual hires in the history of the district, had it not been struck down by the Governing Board.

Among the handful of new hires and extra duty contracts that are typically negotiated by administration, then rubber-stamped as consent agenda items by Governing Board was a hire that stood out like a red flag.

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The Yavapai College District Governing Board voted Monday, Sept. 12, to kill the Verde Valley Board Advisory Committee, effective at the end of the month.

The committee was formed to represent our voice to the board, which is building new facilities in Prescott and Prescott Valley while promising less than

$5 million to the Verde Valley over the next 10 years even though it will reap over $12 million per year from us — $120 million — over those years. Outrage, threats of lawsuits and secession from the district prompted the committee’s creation. It was a tiny concession, but one that gave the board a list of local recommendations … which the board routinely ignored.

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Sunday, Sept. 11, marks the 15th anniversary of the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Most of us remember exactly where we were when we heard about the attacks. Current high school students view the attacks of 9/11 the same way some of us see the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, or the Attack on Pearl Harbor or the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand — as a historical incident that set in motion a series of world-changing events but one that lacks the visceral immediacy of the memory.

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With final results in, the Sedona City Council will have two new faces come November.

For the three four-year council seats, Vice Mayor John Martinez retained his seat while challengers Joe Vernier and John Currivan won the second and third seats, ahead of incumbent Councilwoman Jessica Williamson, who was not reelected. The race was a statistical dead heat, as only a few percentage points separated the top and bottom vote-getters.

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The Tuesday, Aug. 30, primary election over, but final results are still being tallied, so it’s still too close to call some races on the ballot.

However, looking toward November, there is one key election important to all Sedona area residents — the Sedona-Oak Creek School District Governing Board.

Current board members John D. Miller, Bobbie Surber and Tommy Stovall have all gracefully decided to step aside and not run for reelection, although the ever-loquacious Stovall did initially pull a campaign packet.

We thank these officials for their service on the board.

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