Amish give example of cooperative effort to solve problems

Posted 8 January 2015 at 12:00 am


I’m from Medina Oh really? I have always said it that way when the subject comes up of where I’m from. “And where are you from?” Oh I’m from Medina, a little town halfway between Buffalo and Rochester.

Actually I’m not from Medina, own no property in the village, and do not live in the village. With the exception of renting an apartment at one time for about a year, I have never truly been from Medina. Maybe I need to change my explanation to truly reflect where I’m from when the subject comes up. I would not want to mislead anyone. I’m from the Town of Ridgeway. Hold that thought.

I read a story in the ‘Hub’ on Jan. 6 about a devastating fire that destroyed a milking parlor on a dairy farm owned by an Amish family on Fruit Avenue, Medina. The structure and its contents were a total loss.

A milking parlor can be likened to the heart of a dairy farm. Without it functioning properly, the dairy farm could not survive for very long. I felt so bad for this ambitious family as they recently moved to the area and have invested much in terms of time and other resources in their property.

About an hour after the firefighting equipment and personnel had left the area, I decided to drive by the property and witness the devastation. The pictures listed in ‘The Hub’ did accurately convey the image of destruction of this central part of the farm operation. What a mess, not to mention the fact that the cows needed to be milked again within just a few hours.

As I drove by this devastation I observed a happening rarely, if ever, seen in the “English” community. There was a group of Amish men clearing the burned out structure, in fact the site of the destroyed structure was virtually free of debris and readied to move forward. I’m sure this small army of helpers all had other important things to do that day, yet they dropped everything in their personal lives to give assistance with a goal of resolving a monumental issue.

It was then that it hit me, I mean really hit me. I relate this fire event to the current situation involving Medina, Ridgeway and Shelby. We can stand around and defend and protect our own separate entities or we can, like the group of helpers previously mentioned, come together to resolve a situation.

The Medina area can boast several examples of municipal success stories which have disregarded geographical and political boundaries and resulted in constructive cooperation.

The Medina Central School district consolidation from approximately 10 separate area school districts is a prime example. The Medina Memorial Hospital, The Sandstone Society, Hospice of Orleans and countless other civic ventures, all serve as examples of purposeful cooperative efforts by men and women with a vision for our community.

Our community has been and continues to be fortunate to have citizenry committed to looking beyond the status quo. Change and progress can be synonymous if driven by open minds and cooperative efforts on the part of those chosen to represent us.

The end result could be once again when asked, so where are you from? Oh, I’m proud to say I’m from Medina, you may not have heard of it. It’s a quaint community, located on the Erie Canal about halfway between Buffalo and Rochester, with a vision for its future.

Lee Blackburn
Fruit Avenue, Medina