Thu, 07/09/2020 - 5:45pm

Support town employees

To the Editor:

In these difficult times I believe that it is important to support our town employees. I feel that it is not proper or ethical to renege on contracts that have already been signed. Our town employees are certainly not overpaid, and increases in their recently signed contracts are small.

These employees provide valuable services, live and spend their money here, and of course, many of them pay property taxes. If there is a budget shortfall, let’s find better ways to address the issue instead of placing an unnecessary burden on the backs of our town employees.

John Warfel

Dunn Town Road


Thank you, Linda

To the Editor:

On behalf of Block Island Health Services, we would like to thank Linda Closter, RN for her dedication to the medical center over the past 30+ years. As most have already heard, Linda has decided to retire from BIHS and she will be greatly missed. Words cannot express the appreciation we have for her service.

Linda goes above and beyond for her patients. She has worked tirelessly to serve the community and has dedicated countless hours to the health and well-being of Block Island residents. Not only does she serve the community Monday through Friday, she also volunteers her time to come in after hours and on weekends when the need for patient care arises.

To further exemplify her dedication, Linda has agreed to stay on with the health center until a suitable replacement can be found. We are all honored to work with someone who has so passionately cared for her patients.

Please join us in celebrating Linda and wishing her a happy retirement and joy in her next adventure.


Thomas Warcup, Laurie Anderson and the BIHS Board of Directors


Great health care

To the Editor:

A couple of weeks ago on Saturday, June 6, I woke up with extreme vertigo, a new experience. My wife called the Medical Center and they told us to come on over. Luckily, there were two people at our house who could walk me out to the car and we drove there.

When we arrived we were met by Linda and taken inside where there were three others gathered to help us. I cannot say enough about the care and concern they proceeded to administer. They were terrific.

One never knows what will occur at local centers, but I can assure all that they will get great care at the Block Island Medical Center. Thank you all very much!

Peter Rucci

Corn Neck Road


Wear a mask

To the Editor:

I have a comment on the article about the town deciding to require masks in public:

I think the decision to make masks mandatory in public is a good one. I live in Brooklyn, N.Y., and have been a visitor to Block Island for most of the past 30 years. (I am hoping to be back sometime this year as well.) New York City has been devastated by Covid-19 more than almost any city in the world; an experience we will never forget, and defend against ever happening again. We have gone from the most infections to the least because our citizens have co-operated with quarantine rules by, among other things, wearing masks when going into crowded public places; which is pretty much everywhere.

This is only when you cannot maintain six feet of social distancing, or going into stores, but of course, that is almost all the time when you are in town.

This has been proven to work, and New York is a prime example. This is a minor inconvenience, with a big payoff for the community; and that’s what it’s all about, doing something good for others by not spreading the virus.

If you are mandating masks, you need to provide easy access to masks, or give them out for free. They should be prominent in every store and sold at low cost. They should be available on the ferry as well (perhaps they are).

The police are right — they should not have to deal with this, or be giving out tickets. The town should have “ambassadors” reminding people of the rules, and if they do not have a mask, give them one! Explain the point of the mask, and exactly when they need to put them on — when they approach people or go inside a store. Otherwise, they can remove it.

If people are so obstinate that they refuse, then retailers and restaurant/bar staff should refuse service. This is common in New York City. A few may throw a fit, but in the end, they will have no choice but to comply. If they continue to throw a fit, then they are probably drunk and disorderly anyway. Then you call the police.

I hope all goes well with this program.

Paul Sternglass

New York


Donate to the Blood Drive

To the Editor:

Our next blood drive will be Thursday, July 16 at the Block Island School from 10:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.

I checked with Dr. Tom Warcup at the Block Island Medical Center and he has approved the event. The school has also approved. The drive will be in the gym and, accordingly, there is more than enough space for social distancing. Blood drives are being held each day on the mainland. The Rhode Island Department of Health has approved all blood drives conducted by the Rhode Island Blood Center.

One new change is that appointments are being encouraged as opposed to walk-ins.

You can make an appointment by visiting www.ribc.org/drives to book or call (401) 453-8383. Walk-ins are welcomed and will be admitted as soon as social distancing permits. If you have questions regarding eligibility to give, call (401) 453- 8307 and speak to a technician. 

Other things to remember:

● Age 16 may donate with parent’s permission. Forms are available at the site.

● Age 17 and above may donate. There is no upper age cutoff.

● Those who have had Lyme disease may be able to donate again.

● Those who have had Babesiosis more than two years ago can donate again.

● Bring a photo ID.

Please make every effort to donate. Your donation is needed more than ever. Each donation can save three lives. Summer residents and guests are welcome to donate.

Peter Greenman, Coordinator

Rhode Island Blood Center


‘We are grateful’

To the Editor:

The family of William R. “Bill” Vallee, Jr. are endlessly grateful and overwhelmed by your kindness and generosity during the passing of our brother. We would like to thank all of Bill’s Block Island friends who donated the memorial bricks in his memory. Bill would have been honored and humbled with the placement of the bricks at Mary D. Park and his favorite building: The North Light.

Bill always felt at home on Block Island and spent 20-plus years working as a Master Plumber, sharing many happy times laughing and reminiscing with long-time island friends.

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!

Kathleen (Vallee) Gius of Canterbury, Conn., Ann (Vallee) Gallant of Warwick, R.I., Susan Vallee of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and our Mom, the late Filomena “Philly” Vallee.