Traverse City Record-Eagle

May 4, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 05/04/2013

Traverse City Record-Eagle

---- — Hope on Mother’s Day

As Mother’s Day approaches, consider this: a mom’s gift of life can take on new meaning for thousands of patients fighting life-threatening blood cancers like leukemia and lymphoma. Choosing to donate her child’s umbilical cord blood could provide a cure for patients whose only hope is a stem cell transplant from an unrelated donor.

There is no cost to donate to a public cord blood bank and it is completely safe for both mother and baby. Cord blood is collected immediately after a baby is born and does not interfere with labor or delivery in any way. Donated cord blood units that meet criteria are listed on the Be The Match Registry, so they are available to any patient in need of a cord blood transplant across the globe.

I encourage everyone, especially those from diverse racial or ethnic backgrounds, to reflect on the gift of life this Mother’s Day and consider public cord blood donation. This simple act gives immense hope to patients around the world, and potentially offers someone a second chance at life.

For more information, contact the Michigan Blood Cord Blood Bank at (866) MIBLOOD (642-5663) or, or visit

Lee Ann Weitekamp

Grand Rapids

The writer is a medical doctor and Vice President of Quality and Medical Services at Michigan Blood.

Teach cursive in artStrokeStyle/$ID/Japanese Dots

We started homeschooling our children nine years ago. At that time, as a family, we had to decide what our curriculum would contain. Should we spend our time teaching cursive writing or devote our time to teaching keyboarding?

Nine years ago I was working for a hospital, and one of my responsibilities was to review the written portion of patient charts. There was no other industry that had more hand-written notes than a hospital. I found that staff (physicians and nurses) very seldom used cursive writing. The majority of the staff used print with a few words written in cursive.

At that point we decided as a family to teach exclusively the art of keyboarding. A great decision by us.

Now, the hospital I work at no longer uses paper and pens to write notes. All is done on a computer.

Cursive writing is an art form like calligraphy. It should be taught in art class.

Pat O’Hara

Traverse City