EDITOR'S NOTE: The Thumbs column is being published a day late due to deadline changes brought about by this week's inclement weather.
As forecast, the chill was on for last weekend and frigid temperatures continue for several more days. However, Hot Springs and Garland County residents know full well that the warmth of human kindness offers an abundance of comfort where needed throughout our community.
On that note, we send out a big "Thumbs-up" to the volunteers, organizations, churches, businesses, law enforcement agencies, and city government staffs for answering the call to open an emergency warming shelter at the First United Methodist Church Family Life Center to accommodate local homeless citizens.
Special thanks to First United Methodist Church; Sally Carder, Shower Ministry coordinator at St.Luke's Episcopal Church; Kathy Randel, Outreach coordinator for St. Luke's Episcopal Church; Kim Carter, director of Cooperative Christian Ministries and Clinic; and Trish Nooner, director of Full Circle Ministries at Lakeview Assembly of God Church, for their leadership roles with shelter specifics and to all of the generous people who contributed money and time to show their compassion for others.
By the same token, here is another highly deserved "Thumbs-up" to Cpl. Jon Lane of the Garland County Sheriff's Department and recipient of a Certificate of Valor for rescuing a woman from her burning house on Jan. 22. According to the hometown newspaper, Lane was on patrol in the area of Albert Pike Road at about 8 a.m. when he saw smoke coming from the vicinity of Westpine and Piccola streets. On investigation, he found flames coming from the windows and doors of a home on Piccola.
He then saw an elderly female in a carport headed back toward the house. He yelled for her to stop but she went inside. Lane ran into the home and was able to get her outside. A GCSD news release said "first responders on the scene directly credited Cpl. Lane with saving the woman's life." "Thank you, Cpl. Lane, for your bravery and public safety commitment."
We also say, "Congratulations," and "Thumbs-up" to Arkansas State Police Cpl. Andrew Ault, who was honored on Jan. 29 with the Garland County Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award.
Presented during the 2020 Officer of the Year luncheon in Benton by Arkansas Attorney General Lesley Rutledge, Ault and fellow recipients from around the state were recognized for their dedicated service to Arkansans.
Meanwhile, we salute and say, "Thumbs-up" to two local school districts for finding ways to benefit all of their students.
Lakeside High School was one of 56 schools nationwide recognized for "Closing the gender gap" and expanding young women's access to computer science coursework."
Lakeside received the Computer Science Female Diversity Award from the College Board, a nonprofit organization.
Lake Hamilton's New Horizon program received a $10,000 Advancing Wellness and Resiliency in Education grant to provide "mental health care awareness and trauma-informed practices for students and staff members."
Speaking of education, here is a "Thumbs-up" to author David Michaelis' biography of Eleanor Roosevelt.
Titled "Eleanor," the work details Roosevelt's strengths, courage, activism, and humanitarian work in another difficult period of strife and difficulty for our nation.
The Thumbs Column appears in The Sentinel-Record the first and third Wednesday of each month. The newspaper welcomes readers' comments and suggestions, which should be submitted in writing with a telephone number and home address for verification and contact purposes. This information is kept confidential.