Meetings: Holiday Inn - Thursdays at 12:00pm-1:15pm


Rotary Club of Martinsburg - Martinsburg WV / Grapevine  / September 5, 2013 – Meeting Roundup

September 5, 2013 – Meeting Roundup

authorphoto[1]Our speaker this week is former Rotarian Bob O’Connor.  He lives in Charles Town, West Virginia, close to most of the sites of his books. He writes about the Civil War, so his area of influence is probably somewhere between Gettysburg, PA and Lexington, VA. He has been involved in public speaking for years and years. Since 2006, his speaking engagements have spanned 18 states and the District of Columbia. He speaks at  libraries, schools, civic organizations, Civil War Round Tables, book clubs, and to most anyone who will listen. His interest in history goes back to a trip in 1958 to Galesburg, IL where he attended the 100th anniversary of the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Carl Sandburg was the featured speaker. He has worked full time and part time as a newspaper reporter, and at various jobs — many that required writing press releases, news articles, or reports. His first published article was when he was in 7th grade – in an Illinois Historical Society for junior high students.

Along the way he was privileged to work with Superintendent Rich Rambur (my first program as program chair), and he allowed him to start two marvelous events at the Antietam Battlefield that are still going strong. They are the Independence Day Concert at Antietam Battlefield in July and the Memorial Illumination at Antietam Battlefield in December. Fortunately for him and the community, Rich was an “out of the box thinker” and didn’t get the government manual out and just say “those things aren’t allowed in National Parks”. While director of Tourism in Washington County, Maryland, he became involved in touring local places like Antietam Battlefield and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. He was hooked. His staff thought he was an expert, but really he knew just enough to get by. The more he learned, the more he wanted to learn.
He has always collected books on three historical characters — Abraham Lincoln, John Wilkes Booth and John Brown. He ended up living in Charles Town, West Virginia — a place John Brown and John Wilkes Booth had both visited in late 1859. This became the inspiration for his first novel The Perfect Steel Trap Harpers Ferry 1859. The book was named a Finalist in the 2006 Best Book Awards by USA Book News.
He graduated from Dixon High School in Dixon, Illinois and has a Biology degree from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. He lives close to his son, Craig, and his daughter, Kelli, and his six grandchildren.
His latest book is a compilation of the events leading up to the formation of West Virginia called Countdown to West Virginia Statehood.


Sarah Parsons told us a little about the latest urgent care facility to come to Martinsburg. MedExpress Urgent Care is the national leader in urgent care delivery, providing high-quality, fast and affordable care to those seeking medical treatment for illness and injury. MedExpress operates multiple full-service, walk-in urgent care facilities in Delaware,  Florida,  Indiana,  Maryland,  New  Jersey, Pennsylvania,  Tennessee,  Virginia  and  West  Virginia. MedExpress centers are open 12 hours per day, 7 days per week, and always have a physician on site. Founded in 2001, MedExpress is headquartered in Morgantown, West Virginia.
Urgent care offers treatment to patients of all ages for injury and illness, like the flu, asthma attacks, broken bones, cuts requiring stitches and more, providing you a one-stop option for unscheduled, time-sensitive care.


Answer to last week’s question:
Vocational Service is the way Rotary fosters and supports the application of the ideal of service in pursuit of all vocations.  Inherent to the ideal are:

  • Adherence to and promotion of the highest ethical standards in all occupations including faithfulness and fidelity to employers, employees, and associates, fair treatment of them and of competitors, the public, and those with whom one has any business or professional relationships
  • The recognition of the worthiness to society of all useful occupations, not just one’s own
  • The contribution of one’s vocational talents to the problems and needs of society

This week’s question:
What is Vocational Service Month? 

Our first two student guests of the new school year were twins Claire and Lauren Linton from Hedgesville High.
Amanda Ryder, Market Leader with BB&T, was a guest of PP Gail Moxley. PP Gilbert Miller brought Tom Cummings, a retired banker now working at Prettyman Broadcasting. Cassandra Nipe, a student at Shepherd, was back as a guest of her mom, Christina. Anita Cooper was back as a guest and chauffeur for her dad, Walt Ridenour.
Trent Johnson, principal of Martinsburg High, has been proposed for membership by Joanne Wadsworth.  If there are no written objections, he will become a member this week.

September 19th, we will have a multi-club mixer at the Hollywood Casino in Charles Town beginning at 6:30pm.
Wear your Rotary pin to the meeting and get two 50/50 tickets for the price of one.  Same thing happens if you wear a Rotary shirt.
We contributed 890 pounds of food to the Mega Food drive, all of it much appreciated.
Bill Bowen is looking for sponsors for high schools for the Sports Breakfast. The cost is $350.
A special thanks goes to all those who volunteered for the Day of Caring this Tuesday.
September 26th, we will go on a field trip to the Dillon Farm Museum.
Tom Keys won 50/50, but did not draw the elusive Ten of Diamonds.  He will sell tickets this week.