SOCORRO, New Mexico (STPNS) -- I was able to spend time with my granddaughter last week on a couple of different occasions. She had a little runny nose, but we share hugs and kisses that are far too precious to stay any distance from each other.

This week I am paying for it physically, when I look at the signs and symptoms of flu; well that?s me! My fingers, eyelids and skin hurt. I was hoping yesterday resting I would feel better today, nope.

All of the medical ?stay home? symptoms are with me. Headache, sore throat, muscle aches, extreme tiredness, stomach problems, and body temperatures that can?t decide what they want, hot or cool.

I tried to blame it on my husband, Dan, and asked if anyone at his office was sick, but I couldn?t blame him, he says everyone in the office is healthy. When I am not feeling well it always reminds me of my grandparents, when Grandma got sick Grandpa was more than happy to fix her an old fashioned Hot Toddy.

Since I can?t do that I found that an ice cream sundae seems to settle my stomach, so that doesn?t exactly hurt my feelings. I do feel hope even when I feel this bad because this time of year we are waking up to the fiery most beautiful sunrises that only the Southwest seems to have to offer.

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There was a tragedy in Alpine at about 3 p.m. Monday at the Forest Service compound which affected some of us here in Luna. A man broke into the abandoned yellow home that sits just off of the


Forest Service employees discovered the broken glass and called the Arizona State Police. After an officer entered the home and identified himself, he heard a gun shot. Officers quickly backed out of the house and a perimeter was established, evacuating a few surrounding homes.

Highway 180 was closed for a long period of time. Allison Gustafson brought home safely our Luna school children who attend the Alpine school. Some of the teachers and students were unable to leave the school until about 9 p.m.

Forest Service employees in Luna who work in Alpine were stuck until later in the evening until traffic was rerouted through some back forest roads At this writing there is still very little information available to the public. We do know that when the S.W.A.T. team from Sanders, Ariz., sent in a robot flown in from Phoenix, they found the man in a closet dead of a self-inflicted gun shot wound.

Thankfully, no one else was injured in this desperate act and our prayers are with any family this man may have had and for his soul to feel he had to take such desperate measures in avoiding being caught, for whatever reason.

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Each of us here in Luna should have received a wonderful letter from the new Luna Service Station owners, Sam and Kathy Harris. They want to get the word out that they are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day. They also have greatly expanded on the store inventory and it will truly help us in saving us a trip to ?town? when we find ourselves running out of one or two items. They have found a gasoline supplier who has made their gas prices very competitive. Stop by and introduce yourself as a fellow ?Lunatic? for a special discount available just for us.

We must also take this opportunity to thank Brad and Idonna who will be missed, but on a much easier schedule to travel and spend precious time with each other and extended family. Brad will still work for the Harris? at Harris Auto. It is wonderful to see this community landmark still going strong and we appreciate the Harris? in their hometown pride.  

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Last Saturday evening?s Halloween Carnival at the Luna Community Center which was sponsored by the Luna Valley 4-H and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Young Men?s and Young Women?s auxiliaries went extremely well. They hosted booths and a costume party and it was very well attended. A special thank you is given to all who worked so hard in putting this event together.

Also please remember that the Luna Valley 4-H is currently in the process of open registration for the 2006-2007 year. Please contact Joyce Laney or Debbie Laney for packets.

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Last Thursday brought big changes to our Luna Volunteer Fire Department. Lloyd Jackson was elected fire chief, with Larry Stone serving as assistant chief. Lorraine Snyder is the secretary. Dan Mindar will still be in charge of training on the first Saturday of each month, with Joe Mindar as his assistant.

Reminders will be sent via pager to remind all members of meetings. Open recruiting is always a very important factor for anyone 17 and older. If we cannot keep an active and trained fire department, it will affect all of us in our budgets with the highest homeowner?s insurance ratings evaluated.

Many thanks to Robert Newport for his time and sacrifices in his terms as Luna Fire Chief and thanks for carrying this important responsibility for so many years.

Beginning December 1, water at the Luna Park and Fire Station will no longer be public accessible except for emergencies. Local residences can contact either the Luna Service Station or a member of the fire department.

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The Alpine Community Presbyterian Church is hosting its annual Thanksgiving dinner at 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 4, at the Alpine Community Center. The meal will be provided and if you would like to contribute you are invited to bring a dessert. There will be door prizes, a program and gift bags for the children. Contact Jeanette Jackson for more information. This is a wonderful opportunity to get out and meet your Alpine neighbors. All are invited to attend this fun annual event.

Also, mark your calendars for the upcoming annual Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Luna Ward Thanksgiving dinner. The dinner will be at 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, at the Luna L.D.S. Ward House. All are invited and welcome to attend for a wonderful feast and socializing. The meal will be provided and if you wish to contribute you may add to this feast also with a dessert.

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For this week?s genealogy corner I would like to invite you to research Cyndi?s list at for ?poorhouse? records and a wealth of links. It is a very important part of our heritage in this country and the United Kingdom that there were asylums and poor houses. Don?t be ashamed in looking there, I always encourage reading about circumstances of our ancestor?s histories that sometime were true character builders that belong in the pages of our past.

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Quote of the week:

?It is wiser to find out than to suppose.?

? Mark Twain