Thumbs-Up, Thumbs-Down – December 26

Providing a lift

Thumbs-up to Janet McIntosh and Briana Barger for their efforts to add color to downtown North Vernon after a fire on Nov. 21 — the second one within a month — destroyed two buildings and damaged five others. The two painted a mural on the barricade around the burned-out area to make it look better for North Vernon’s Christmas in the City celebration.

Speaking out

Thumbs-up to everyone who cared to express their opinions about Seymour’s new $1 million welcome sign at Interstate 65 and Tipton Street. Like it or hate it, the eye-catching sign has drawn plenty of comments and brought attention to the city. It’s good to see so many people willing to comment on the sign either positively or negatively. It would be nice if other issues affecting the community would draw as much public comment.

Bionic man

Thumbs-up to Russell Bell of Seymour. The 89-year-old Freetown native, known as the bionic man to his family, is a World War II veteran who survived the West Nile virus when he was 80 and is now part of a medical experiment testing a new way to sterilize cow heart valves used to replace human heart valves. He also has a cochlear implant in his left ear and bilateral lens implants in his eyes.

Helping hands

Thumbs-up to the staff at many offices across the city and county who forgo purchasing gifts for each other and instead choose to help a family in need or an organization such as Mental Health America of Jackson County, which conducts an annual gift lift to provide presents to those with mental illness or disabilities.


Thumbs-up to the nine foreign firms — seven Japanese, one French and one Belgian — that have set up shop in the county. Those companies employ more than 3,000 area residents. The willingness to invest here speaks to something good going on here and elsewhere in south central Indiana.

Safety at home

Thumbs-down to those who feel the need

to break into someone’s home and rob and assault the people living there. People should be able to feel safe when they are in their

own home.

No stopping

Thumbs-down to motorists who fail to pay attention or even slow down in construction zones on our streets

and highways.