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Medal Presentation

Shown in the accompanying photo is Arkansas 2nd District Congressman Tim Griffin (at far right) presenting the Army Good Condct Medal to Peter Smykla. Smykla’s wife, son-in-law and grandchildren are seen to the left in the photo. “Fifty-six years ago a 24-year old soldier was discharged from the Army after serving with the Military Assistance Advisory Group on Taiwan. Specialist 3 Peter Smykla was awarded the Army Good Conduct Medal when he was discharged from the Army, but never received it. That oversight was rectified at the Hot Springs Arlington Hotel recently. Smykla, chairman of the Jefferson County Republican Committee, was attending the State Committee Meeting. Congressman Tim Griffin, a serving U.S. Army Reserve lieutenant colonel, JAG, presented the medal to Smykla after Party Chairman Doyle Webb read the award citation authorized by then Secretary of the Army Wilber Marion Brucker. “The United States Army has awarded the Good Conduct Medal to Specialist 3 Peter Joseph Smykla, Junior, for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity in active federal military service from 11 January 1956 to 24 December 1957.” The presentation was a suprise arranged by county committee members after they learned Smykla never received his medal.

A day in court

I have a lawyer friend. A friend, that is, who just happens to be a lawyer. And she invites me to spend the morning at criminal court, observing. And I say “yes,” the same way I agree to a lot of things in life.

Hanging around the house going batty

Our friend has disappeared. He didn't stay long, much to the relief of Hubby. I didn't think he was much of a threat, but Hubby was worried he might be carrying rabies or some other horrible disease. Considering I wasn't going to get close enough for him to bite, I wasn't worried about our guest's health record.

AETN launches statewide arts initiative

CONWAY — The Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN) has launched LOUPE, a statewide initiative magnifying Arkansas artists, arts organizations and art events. The initiative includes the one-hour broadcast of "LOUPE" Friday, Sept. 13, at 9 p.m., as well as the interactive LOUPE website, aetn.org/ The LOUPE initiative is intended to build an arts and culture collection by curating a gallery of information, visuals and events from across Arkansas. The initiative will also feature new stories about the arts in Arkansas, in addition to revisiting classic features from the AETN archives. The LOUPE broadcast special will share these video segments on-air, while a variety of special "artisodes" will be presented alongside articles, events and educational resources on aetn.org/loupe, an engaging aggregate website highlighting various topics related to arts and culture in Arkansas.

Dishware resentment important to happy marriage

Dishware selection occurs only a couple of times during the marital journey. The first happens when the couple becomes engaged. Prior to actually walking down the aisle, a couple is required by ancient law to select a pattern for their dishes as well as register for other necessary household items. The advent of department stores in the last century or so significantly lowered the difficulty of this pre-marital task.

Pride and fatherhood

As he tells the story of self-respect, fears faced and conquered, boundaries claimed and defended, I notice he seems taller. The timbre of his voice coming deeper. He is absent the anxious energy with which he first walked into my office, months ago.

You are in big trouble, Espn Turbo Smith

It took me days to name my children. People would harass me in the hospital, noting I would not be allowed to leave until the Social Security forms were completed with the baby's full name entered in the appropriate spaces. However, I took the naming part of my job as a new parent very seriously. I refused to be bullied into making the wrong decision.