Our Voice: We're grateful to see the unseen side of people

The guy in the next cubicle might look like Clark Kent during the week, but -- just maybe -- on the weekend he pulls out the cape and dresses like Superman.

Or maybe there is an unknown grief that your neighbor bears.

We really don't know that much about the people around us but the more we learn, the closer we feel.


Niche gatherings are interesting. For example, this Saturday you can learn to identify birds at the McNary Wildlife Refuge in Burbank. Or that same day, you can catch part of the Department of Energy's Regional High School Science Bowl at Washington State University Tri-Cities in Richland.

Last week, thousands came to Pasco for RadCon.

Each group serves a segment of the population, and we appreciate the sense of belonging the different groups create for their members.

Of course, not everyone would want to spend the weekend in "geekdom," but for those who do, RadCon is a great event. As proof of its appeal, the organizers have been able to keep it going for more than 10 years now.

Besides the opportunities it brings to the participants, it's also good for the community at large. It brings in tourism dollars. Even Trekkies have to eat sometime.

Karate Kid

We're also eager to see how a kid from Pasco fares at the World Junior Karate Championships.

We're going to guess that most of the kids at McLoughlin Middle School haven't known that a black belt member of Team USA roams the halls with them -- but we suspect that's changing.

Good luck to Devon Brown on his trip to Australia to represent the United States in international competition.

A cross to bear

We remember the horrible accident that killed Joe Vance on his motorcycle, and seriously injured his wife, Lorri, two years ago.

No doubt it haunts all of the people involved.

We have sympathy for the family that wanted to put a memorial marker at the scene of the crash. We also have sympathy for the property owner who didn't want the cross on her land.

Apparently, there were some misunderstandings about the placement of the marker.

We're thankful a way was found to put up the marker. Many -- maybe most -- misunderstandings stem from not seeing things through the other person's eyes.

We each have our own experiences, expectations and heartbreaks. It's hard to let down our guards, but it's helpful when others can see the scars on our soul.

Mental health warrior

Talking about anxieties with someone is a big help but not always easy for returning veterans. It's a battle that Staff Sgt. Brianna Carter helps active duty military members fight.

The Hanford High grad just returned from nine months in Afghanistan, where the enemy would sometimes plant a roadside bomb or sometimes plant fear in your mind. Both can be dangerous.

And, again, it's hard to see beyond someone's exterior. We're grateful for the people who make the effort to do so.