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I am writing a letter of support for my friend Richie Yow. I thought it would be relatively simple at first, but then I got to thinking, where do I start? I am not like a lot of people, just getting to know Richie in the last year or so when he became a candidate for the State House from District 53. I have actually known Richie’s family since long before Richie was born.
I have known his mom and dad for more years than I care to remember, as well as so many of his cousins, aunts and uncles, and the leader of the gang, his grandfather. There are lots of families in this town to whom some or most of them are nice, caring, hard-working people, but there are few I would not have a bad thing to say about any of them at all. Richie has one of these families.
I know he was brought up to work hard, never expect anyone to give you anything and to love, trust and work for God. I have been closely enough involved in being around Richie through the years that I know for a fact he adheres to this philosophy.
I am a retired police captain with all of my 26 years served in the town of Cheraw, so I know most everyone in Cheraw, and know pretty much all there is to publicly know about them.
For as long as I can remember, I am guessing from about the age of 14 or 15, Richie worked down at the local feed store in town, helping deliver farming and gardening supplies to families in town. I watched him go from a kid who could just barely carry the 50-pound sacks of grain and feed to your car, and didn’t know much about your needs in supplies, chemicals and solutions to being someone the older people respected and counted on to wait on them and help them with their needs. People would actually walk in and ask for him personally to wait on them.
I did not go to the same church he did, but in a small town, churches often work together on different projects and you see one another at revivals, weddings, funerals and such. I could tell that he, along with his family, had strong ties to his church and his church service. Some politicians start their community service to the public and church upon offering to run for office, but not Richie. He has had these work ethics pretty much all of his life.
I was a volunteer fireman for some 25 years in Cheraw. When Richie was old enough, he applied and was voted onto the fire department. He was definitely an asset to our department, and worked hard to try to better our community. He was well-liked and received by the older firemen.
He has been in the military for many, many years, and although I cannot personally attest to any of his accomplishments there, by reading about him in our local paper over the years, it was clear he was and is a real asset to our military as well.
Some people you have to sit and really think hard to write an acceptable letter of reference to make them sound like a great individual, but with Richie, it is quite easy, all you have to do is sit at the keyboard and write the truth.