At times it feels like it was only a breath ago. At other times it feels like it was a month ago. But the truth is, we are just a little past two weeks from the moment when our county was plunged into darkness, and our landscape was transformed and sculpted by the snow and wind. As I look back over the weeks between then and now, I am reminded of all the extraordinary that came from the ordinary. I will never know all the exploits performed by so many of you, but these things I saw, or heard about.

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When the storm hit, two of our county commissioners were out of town and it fell to the District II commissioner, John Howard Freeman, to get things moving. And he kept things moving, throughout the cold nights and long days. His employees actually walked through snowdrifts to get to work that first morning, and they were just like John - intent on making the roads passable and the rescue of stranded travelers and others possible. Or making sure there was enough fuel to keep the hospital generator going. I am proud to call you my County Commissioner , John Howard!

There are 1500 miles of county roads in Cimarron County , and as of last Friday, all but two had been opened. So to all the county workers, I also say “thank you”.

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I called them the “Three Amigos”. Three road workers from Beaver County that came to assist our county. They lived at the fair building for three days. They slept on Red Cross cots and showered at the hospital. The first amigo was very tall, with a bushy gray beard, a soft voice and gentle eyes. The second amigo was medium height, round, and loved to talk, even as he bounced from foot to foot and his brown eyes sparkled. The third amigo - well, I don't know what kind of eyes he had for he was really shy and never made eye contact with me. Shorter in height, his smile was covered by a humongous moustache, and the only words I heard him utter were “Thank you, ma'am”. I walked them out the door the night they left us, and I told them “thanks” from all of us. And I thought I caught sight of their wings as they walked across the parking lot!

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I heard he lost ten pounds in one week. I also heard he had taken to talking in his sleep, when he finally gave up for the day and went to bed. And the only time I didn't see Sheriff Keith Borth in motion was when Bonnie made him sit down and eat a bowl of something warm. A heavy load was resting on his shoulders, and I believe he ended up carrying that load successfully. He worked with the OHP and the city police, as well as the other agencies, even as he worked to get heat and lights for his dispatchers and the men in the county jail Before the storm, I think Sheriff Borth was like so many of us - politely asking for equipment and supplies, and accepting the answer, “Sorry, but we don't have the money”. I have a feeling our sheriff will be more assertive from now on, and the next time (there will eventually be a next time) the courthouse will be a shining beacon when the electricity goes off, not a darkened and cold building. The 911 service will work, and more than one phone line will be accessible. That's what I believe, and that's what I believe Sheriff Borth will make happen. And it's up to you and me to help him achieve such lofty goals. No, not lofty goals! Just things that any county seat and any county sheriff's office should be equipped with. I appreciate all you did for our county, Keith, and I appreciate all you will do.

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Even as I am writing this, the Weather Channel just did a segment on Boise City . Yes, that's right! The pictures that accompanied the story were excellent! And the reporter pronounced the name of our town just like we do - Boys City ! I was told that FOX, CNN and several OKC stations also ran stories on our town and county, as well as did all three Amarillo stations

And so, I keep thinking about all the good that came out of this terrible, yet eye-opening, snow storm experience. Before it happened, I dare say many of the officials and team workers that arrived to help us had ever stopped in Boise City if they had even been through Boise City . And now, I truly believe that all of them will remember where we are, and who we are. I also truly believe that from now on we will never walk alone, no matter what happens way out here in the Panhandle. Before it happened, I dare say any major news station had a clue that there was an Oklahoma Panhandle, or knew how to get here. But now, I appreciate the fact so many of them were willing to drive to the edge of nowhere, and then return to their cities with our story. Before it happened, I was ignorant of my own state's agencies and their functions. I didn't know who Commissioner Peach was. I wasn't aware that the Department of Emergency Management existed. But, most sadly, I didn't know that there are so many talented, caring and intelligent people willing to travel to our county, and willing to reach out their hands and help pull us to our feet - and from the snowdrifts. I am humbled, I am grateful and I am so thankful. Not only for the help from downstate, but also for the help that came from next door, from down the street, from across town or from across the county. Alone, we accomplish little. Together, we accomplished much!