Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Reader Reaction: Residents remember 2004 as a year of change

A recent Project: Reader Reaction question asked for memories of 2004. Some responses:

“(IT) WASN’T THE BEST year I’ve had, but I will think of this year as a good year because I am living near my parents, son, uncles, aunts and cousins and I live in Clovis. Someone said you can never go home again, but I am here to tell you that you can go home after being gone for more than 30 years.

“I love Clovis. It is still a small town and the people are still friendly like they were when I was kid. Most of my out-of-state visitors are surprised that strangers greet each other here, unlike California. I enjoy seeing parents interested in what their kids are doing and get involved in sports to support their kids. I’ve only been back three years, but I feel like I never left.”

— Ardyth Elms

“I THINK THIS YEAR was overall a good one for my family — no illness and no major downfalls. Now for Clovis, I believe it was a year of ups and downs. The city government still pushes the convention center even after the taxpayers voted against it. The schools had major differences with clothing and this time it wasn’t only the students (no blue jeans for teachers). ... The city grew, causing long traffic delays — just what some of us came to Clovis to get away from. ...

“This year the Clovis football team went to (the state finals). Even if they didn’t win there was nothing to be ashamed about. They are all winners in our eyes.

“Also who can forget what’s new now — a water shortage, a cheese plant, Chili’s, IHOP and so much more for people to do that I get a bad taste in my mouth when I hear someone say there’s nothing to do in Clovis. ... I guess that’s why kids play KGB.

“Well, there is so much that happened both good and bad — but that’s big-city living and I guess we have to grow with the city, look at our mistakes and try not to let history repeat itself.”

— Steve Gershon

“(I WILL REMEMBER 2004) as a most eventful year: Two granddaughters married; a l7-year-old grandson being invited to attend his choice of the U.S. military academies after his high school graduation in May; ... the election; the Clovis police department pay-raise issue; our travels to visit friends and relatives, and those who visited us here. ... A truly memorable year.”

— Harold Burris

“(IT) WAS A GOOD year for me and being a positive person I always expect the best (and I’m) looking forward to another good year.

— Mac McDonald

“THE YEAR 2004 WILL certainly stand out in history as the year the conservative and Christian people of the United States chose not to sit idly by when faced with a major decision. I believe this year will prove to be a turning point in the direction that will shape the future of our nation.

“The year 2004 will go down in history as a wake-up call for the liberal media who in the past have always been powerful enough (or at least believed they were) to sway public opinion. I believe public opinion has swayed their thinking. Already there is a noticeable difference in the attitude of some of the major networks and newscasters and there will be more to come. ...

“I believe it is the start of a return to the morals and beliefs that our country was founded upon. The year 2004 will be known in history as the year that people decided to take a stand for what is right. ...

“It is my firm belief that not only is 2004 a turning point for our nation, but also a turning point for our community. We have seen tremendous growth and change throughout our area. This is because of years of dedicated people working toward a common goal — that goal being the betterment of our community.”

— Don Reid

“MY YOUNGEST GRANDSON STARTED kindergarten, my youngest daughter was selected the head softball coach at Clovis High and my husband was selected as Clovis’ city manager. Everyone has a roof over their heads, clothes on their back and food in their mouth!”

— Mearl Thomas

“THE POSITIVE THING I will remember about 2004: Our police officers received a much-needed raise and now maybe we can fill the empty positions.

“Now for the negatives:

1. Only 20 percent of drivers in Clovis use turn signals, with zero enforcement for the balance.

2. No noise enforcement on boom boxes, loud automobile exhaust and especially Harleys.

3. Very limited street-sweeper use.

4. Pot holes going unfilled for months.

After reading many letters to the editor, the question is “ Does the city get it?”

— John Frey

“THIS YEAR WAS VERY different for us, as we lived in Florida for 20 years, plus.

“It has been an experience — the wind, brownouts, the snow and cold, the wind, the traffic, the parks, the wind. The one thing I wanted to experience was a tornado, preferably away from town.

“Clovis is OK, but we are moving back to Florida. Hopefully there will not be another hurricane season like this year. ...

“The people that we have met and all the personnel in the stores have been nice. We have been exposed to the medical profession, hospital and doctors. It was a good experience. Of course, we heard some bad things about the doctors and the hospital, but that is something that all small cities and towns experience.”


“WHEN I SETTLED IN Clovis in 1982, after arriving here for my last three years with the United States Air Force in 1979, I did so because of the friendly community atmosphere. In all my travels with the military, some 25 years worth, no community was ever so down to earth and friendly. Here it is, year (2005), and I have not changed my opinion. Clovis is still a great place to live.

“The year 2004 had some downers and that’s typical of any community, but I will always remember the good things. We enjoy great schools, wonderful churches, super people, and we are among the best places to live with a below-average cost of living (your money goes further here). That means a lot to a retired guy like me.

“I can hardly go out any day, anywhere in this great community, without running into people whom I know ... They always greet me with a smile ... For me, that makes my day. I try to give some payback by volunteering my time with the Local Emergency Planning Committee. I say to Clovis, all of you, thanks for a great place to live.”

— Bob Baker

“I WILL REMEMBER 2004 as a year of change; a time of new beginnings; a time to remember that we are here on Earth by the grace of God. Give him thanks and all the praises and be ready to take the path before you and trust in him to guide you on the right steps through life.”

— Jim Sitterly