COVID-19 UPDATE FROM THE NATIONAL COUNCILOR
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
This year has been a challenge for everyone. The COVID-19 virus is still out there, still spreading. I am sure everyone is tired of hearing about it.....but, everyone is, or should be, doing their best to stay safe and keep others safe.
Our economy has suffered from the need to shut businesses and stay home. It was necessary. But now businesses are trying to open back up and many of our small businesses are having a very hard time. So, Please support your local owned small businesses, especially those owned by other Juniors.
With businesses opening back up, people are out and about again....and cases of Covid-19 are on the rise again in many states. So we need to be extra careful as our councils start holding meetings again.
As National Councilor I do not wish to make mandates for our members or our councils. I simply wish to remind everyone to follow the mandates of your own state and the CDC. Please continue to practice social distancing, wearing a mask and washing your hands or use hand sanitizer. If possible, it would be nice if every council could provide hand sanitizer at their council meetings.
I would also like to suggest that our councils hold off on any large gatherings, such as banquets; or fund raisers and membership drives where the public is invited. We will get back to those things, but for now lets do all we can to keep each other safe.
One suggestion for our states, if you need to hold a larger meeting, is to use an on line conference such as zoom which many schools are using.
We are making plans for the 2021 National Session with the hope that we will get to meet together.
As we all pray for an end to this pandemic, please stay safe and lets do all we can to keep our loved ones and every member of our councils safe from the spread of this virus.
It will not last forever and I look forward to the day when we can meet together again in person.
May 30, 2020 State Councilor David Kindig hosted a special Teleconference meeting to discuss the progress on the West Virginia State Session scheduled for July of 2020.
During the meeting a number of concerns were addressed.. The State executive committee along with the District 1 State Session Committee concluded the best decision would be to cancel the meeting.
Considerations were given to continued COVID 19 health potential, West Virginia State imposed restrictions as well as the restrictions and modifications of the host hotel.
Considered were, low attendance, the accommodation reductions and changes and action of other States in relation to their State Sessions.
Having all things considered it was declared by Council Kindid, by unanimous vote, the West Virginia State Session for 2020 would be cancelled. In addition, it was determined that District 1 would host the 2021 State Session planned for July 15, 16 and 17, 2021 at Flatwoods, West Virginia.
As many have seen, our National Council, Richard Beppler has issued a statement regarding the resuming of Jr.O.U.A.M. activities with limitations and precautions, within guidelines of each State as we begun returning to normal lifestyles.
West Virginia State Councilor David Kendig has asked that all West Virginia Councils set the target date of May 22, 2020 to start reopening and holding Council meetings. Guidelines for social distancing and face masks will need to be followed.
Here are some recommendations from Medical and EMS sources to consider for resuming activities.
1) Continue the established COVID-19 precautions:
Wear gloves and mask when out in public, maintain 6 feet social distance, disinfect areas of possible cross-contamination with household disinfectants (preferable one with Bleach), wash hands frequently and certainly before touching your face or foods, when washing is not readily available, use a hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol.
2) Remember that COVID-19 affects different people in different ways. Most infected people will develop mild to moderate symptoms.
Common symptoms: fever, tiredness, dry cough.
Seek medical attention if you have a fever, a cough, and difficulty breathing. Call ahead.
On average it takes 5–6 days from when someone is infected with the virus for symptoms to show, however it can take up to 14 days.
People with mild symptoms who are otherwise healthy should self-isolate.
As we near the possible end to the stay sheltered at home order, I pray all members will come back to gather in our lodge halls and fellowship with our brothers and sisters. During this time at home, my hope is that our members across the state do not find it easier to stay at home rather than attending meetings. It is so important to the future and the growth of the Jr. Order for all of us to stay active.
As we begin to gather again it is important to remember that COVID-19 is still present and we still need to take necessary precautions so we stay well and disease free. COVID-19 is a pandemic the likes of which most of us have not seen before. However, as I heard from a TV minister this morning, Smallpox has been eliminated by the grace of God. With God's help COVID-19 will be brought under control and hopefully eliminated.
Our Supreme Councilor is still in charge of our World and we must continue to put our trust and faith in him. Together we will get though COVID-19 and hopefully come out better and stronger on the other side.
I pray all of you stay well, but if the unthinkable happens, remember to trust the God we worship to take care of you and hold you in the hollow of his hand. Amen.
Yours in V, L, & P
David A Kendig, State Councilor WV
The ladies of Council 123 and 187 gathered (with proper social distancing) at the Mountain Lodge to make masks for medical support. THANK YOU LADIES!
A MESSAGE FROM NATIONAL COUNCILOR RICHARD BEPPLER: March 19, 2020
Greetings to all members of the Jr. Order United American Mechanics
In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic which has gripped our nation, I as your National Councilor, am hereby suspending all meetings and functions of all Jr. Order Lodges throughout our order. Effective immediately all regular Council meetings will be suspended through April 30th, 2020. Also any and all planned functions such as dinners, banquets, State Sessions or Conventions are suspended for the same period. We will continue to monitor the national policies put into play regarding the restrictions on gatherings and inform all members of any further restriction in the future.
It is with great sadness I find these steps necessary to help curtail the spread of this terrible virus and insure the well-being of our membership of whom many are in the age bracket most vulnerable to the dire effects if contracting the virus. I ask all to join me in prayer for any we may know who has been afflicted with this virus.
I welcome any contact or correspondence from any of our members seeking further information on this or any issues. My contact address, phone and email are listed above.
In loving service,
Richard A. Beppler
A reminder from State Secretary Joyce Everett:
The 2020 WV State Scholarship Applications must be in hand or postmarked by April 1, 2020 to be considered for the scholarship.
If you need a form - contact you local council. Forms were mailed earlier to each council.
Dear Brothers and Sisters;
We recently lost a dear Brother. Below is a copy of his obituary. Brother Bob was on the National Board of Control where he served faithfully for many years. We just saw Brother Bob in June at the National Session. I’m so glad we had that chance to visit with him. He will be missed.
Robert C. Reeves Jr., 79
Nov 4, 2019, 4:52 pm
Robert C. Reeves Jr. of Orient, died on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, at the age of 79, from complications related to cardiac arrest.
He was born on Jan. 3, 1940, to Robert C. and Gertrude (King) Reeves.
He was employed at Clinton A. Hommel Inc. Plumbing and Heating Supply for 49 years, the last 28 years as owner of the business.
He was an active member of the Orient Fire Department since February 1958, and he held numerous leadership positions over the years.
He was a cofounder and organizer of the Orient Fire Department Rescue Squad. He was a member of the Junior Order United
American Mechanics since 1965. He was past president of the Orient Community Activities organization and a member of the Orient Congregational Church.
His hobbies included hunting, fishing, ice boating, community service, and being with and enjoying his family and friends.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Marge (Geehreng). Memorial donations may be made to the Orient Fire Department, P.O. Box 130, Orient NY 11957.
The Galloping Gavel is a trophy established in 1989 by Brother Carroll Bonnett.
The Gavel may be taken from any Council by a visitation during a meeting with at least four visiting Council members.
This Gavel promotes fellowship and visitation of members of one council to another.
It has made it's way throughout the State to every council through the years.
A record book in the base of the Gavel tracks the Gavels movement over the years.
Fidelity Council #182 paid a visit to St. Albans Council #123 on November 14, 2019 to retrieve the Gavel and take it to their Lodge Hall.
In a brief ceremony, St. Albans Councilor Harry Vance presented Fidelity Councilor Jeannie Dolin with the Gavel.
It was with pride the Gavel was turned over and the fellowship was very welcome.
Let it be known to all of West Virginia Councils that the Galloping Gavel is now located at Fidelity Council #182. Congratulations Fidelity!
Joyce Everett, State Secretary
2019-2020 WV State Officers
Past Councilor Gary Vance
Councilor David Kindig
Vice Councilor John Mason
Secretary Joyce Everett
Treasure Jerry Frye
Chaplain Dan Collis
Conductor Dick Myers
Warden Jennifer Dailey
Inside Sentinel David Bailey
Outside Sent. David Dolin
GO FORTH AND SPREAD THE NEWS OF OUR BELOVED ORDER'S PRINCIPLES. OUR NATION NEEDS US DURING THESE TROUBLED TIMES.