Lined with Pride
I am privileged to live in Ukiah.
Ukiah is a community where people care deeply enough about each other to line our streets with American flags to honor those who have served us so well. This caring nature is truly one of the best things about our community.
This weekend we celebrate Memorial Day, and there is no better time to pause for a moment and remember the men and women who have served our nation and given us so much. I can’t think of a more heroic act than to give of yourself and serve your fellow man, and our veterans are some of the heroes who have given the most.
Today, more than a million men and women—including some of our community’s finest—keep us safe by serving in our armed forces. Millions more have served our country in the past with distinction and honor. These brave men and women put their lives on the line, sometimes having to give their lives so that we may freely enjoy ours.
This Memorial Day, our local Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1900 will lead a memorial service to honor those who paid the ultimate price while serving our country. The ceremony is scheduled to start at noon at the Russian River Cemetery, located at 940 Low Gap Road, across the street from the Sheriff’s Office. If you cannot find parking at the cemetery, alternative parking is available across the street in the county parking lots.
It is important to remember those who died for our country; it is also important to take care of those who made it home. Many veterans lived through horrific events and now struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Some of the most common symptoms of PTSD include recurring memories or nightmares of the traumatizing event(s), sleeplessness, loss of interest, anger, and irritability. Sometimes these symptoms don’t surface for months or even years after returning home.
The Veterans Crisis Line is an excellent resource for vets who are struggling. This confidential, toll-free service connects veterans in crisis with responders. Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 or send a text message to 838255 to receive critical support 24 hours a day, every day of the year. The Veterans Crisis Line can be accessed online at http://veteranscrisisline.net.
Along with the parades and picnics this Memorial Day weekend, one thing is for sure: our officers will be arresting some people for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or other drugs. Drunk and drugged driving is a crime that affects not only the intoxicated driver and others using the roadway, but all of us.
The good news is that driving under the influence is a crime we can prevent entirely if we have the courage to prevent people from getting behind the wheel when they’re intoxicated. The bad news is that many people cannot bring themselves to stop people from driving when they shouldn’t. In 2015, 10,265 people died in drunk driving crashes—one every 51 minutes—and 290,000 were injured in drunk driving crashes.
As we celebrate this Memorial Day weekend, I hope everyone will have the courage to help prevent drunk driving because if we don’t, these terrible statistics won’t change.
If you drive this weekend, here are some tips to keep you safe:
Plan a safe way home. Arrange a ride or be the sober driver.
Wear a seat belt.
Don’t use a cell phone to call or text while driving.
Slow down. Respect all posted speed limits.
Be aware and pay attention.
Memorial Day weekend is supposed to be a time to remember and honor our veterans who have given us so much; please don’t let this weekend become a time to remember a tragic death from a DUI driver.
As always, our mission at UPD is simple: to make Ukiah as safe as possible. If you have suggestions on how we can improve please feel free to call me. If you would like to know more about crime in your neighborhood, you can sign up for telephone, cell phone and email notifications by clicking the Nixle button on our website: www.ukiahpolice.com.