Printed Letters: March 19, 2014

Ex-Republican now supports Fletcher for House District 54

I didn’t leave the party; it left me. As an active Republican for 60 years (since I was old enough to vote), I worked in every election in which I was in the country. The 2012 election year and the legislative sessions since then made it clear that the Republican Party had abandoned its constitutional, conservative, limited-government values and principles for which I had worked for so many years.

I finally realized that I was wasting my time believing I could make a difference in the party. That is the reason I unaffiliated from the Republican Party. I am now registered unaffiliated.

I didn’t change to Libertarian or American Constitution Party, as I wanted the freedom to support any candidate who stood for constitutional, conservative, limited government.

I am now working for “J.J.” Fletcher for House District 54. His major concern is the economy and jobs for western Colorado. I urge you, though, to check his position on other issues on his website,, and his Facebook page.

I don’t think we need another lawyer or politician who aligns himself with Front Range politicians. We need a businessman who knows how to work and create jobs. We need a representative who will work for the interest of the Western Slope.

If, after learning about him and his issues on the website, you agree with me, I ask that you support him by contributing time or money.


Former owner of the Corral gave much to her community

The Grand Junction community lost an incredible person last Monday. Whether one knew her as Grandma, Ma or Joanie, those who were lucky enough to have known her were blessed. While it is her passing that compels this letter, it is her life that I wish to celebrate.

Joan Wieker owned the Corral from the early 1960s through the late 1980s; she was a business owner and operator who practiced much more than she preached. While owner of the Corral, she fed and sheltered numerous residents of this valley who would not have otherwise been fed or sheltered. This business was my grandmother’s avenue to embody the creed in which she so arduously believed.

The Corral was a social institution and mainstay of downtown Grand Junction, a place where all were welcome and a central location for my family and many others — many of whom were not related to Joanie. On numerous occasions, my siblings and I have made connections with seemingly random people, all of whom returned to Joanie and her kindness, warmth and generosity. In recent years downtown Grand Junction has enjoyed a resurgence, which includes Colorado Avenue, once the home of the Corral. However, I doubt the comfort, community and fun that my grandmother brought to downtown will return.

Whether you went to the Corral for a grilled cheese or a hamburger for lunch or for chili on a cold day, whether you went for a cold beer and some pool with friends, or whether you were lucky enough to enjoy the legendary Christmas Eve parties that followed mass, you knew the Corral was a place to return to and its proprietor and operator, Joan Wieker, was a person to cherish and emulate.

With those things in mind, those of us who knew that place and that wonderful woman celebrate.



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