We once lived four miles down a winding, graveled country road. We had few neighbors and enjoyed the peace and quiet. We felt safe in our isolation. Boy, were we mistaken! One of our neighbors had an accidental fall in her bathroom and couldn’t get up. She called us. We called 911 and went to stay with her until help arrived. It took almost two hours for the ambulance to get there.

The problem was that the emergency folks could not locate her house. There was no address marker on her gate or mailbox. It was 10 at night. My friend was fortunate that her accident was not life threatening. The outcome could have been quite different if it had been.

Now, we all have to ask ourselves, “Can emergency responders find my place? In the dark?” It does not matter if you live in town, have a rural address or own a business.   Something could happen, day or night, in the future that would require you to need help. The Early Volunteer Fire Department, Early Police Department, Guardian EMS and the Early Beautification Commission are encouraging the residents and businesses to consider purchasing the 911 reflective signs that Tom Brown and his staff of SafetyStreet.com will be selling in the Early area during January and February. You will know that the person who contacts you is an authorized sales person because he will have a document with the City of Early letterhead that has been signed by me and  officials of the fire, police and EMS. There is a great need in our area for all of us to effectively mark our locations. The Early Fire Department recommended that we invite Mr. Brown to come and perform this service for us.

These signs will greatly enhance the safety and security of all of us. When you purchase a sign from Mr. Brown’s company, they will also make a contribution of $2 per sign to the Beautification Commission. These funds will be used to enhance our community.

I would like to invite any Early residents who think they would like to be involved with the Beautification Commission to attend our next meeting. It will be held at noon on Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011 in the conference room at the Early Chamber of Commerce building at 104 East Industrial Drive, just off Early Boulevard. I would like to wish everyone a Happy and Safe New Year!