Celebrating some good things in Chester

Chester gets a bad rap most days. You don't have to look any farther than the pages of this newspaper or our DelcoTimes.com website for proof of that. In a lot of ways, it's a bum rap.

I still firmly believe that the majority of people in Chester are good, decent people, intimately involved in their community and frustrated at the rising tide of violence that so often is linked to their home town.

I know how much good is in the city.

On Wednesday, I had lunch with some of them.

I was honored to sit down with officials from the Salvation Army Chester Corps. Every holiday season with partner with the Chester Corps with our Merry Christmas Fund. It's something of a Delaware County tradition. We ask people to make a donation to honor someone close to them. We list their name and the person they want to honor with their donation. Each year we try to raise $50,000.

That money does a lot of good in the city of Chester. Not because of us, but because of people like Maj. Ervin McKoy, and his wife, Anna, who head the Chester Corps.

They held a 'thank you' luncheon at Widener on Wednesday. I picked up a plaque. Among the honorees was Mayor John Linder.

A few hours later, the mayor was here in our office taping our 'Live From the Newsroom' show, focusing on the current violence that is gripping the city. The mayor, and his community liaison Nicole Cogdell, stressed that part of the answer to Chester's ills will have to come from the community.

In particular from groups such as the Salvation Army, and the critical work they do.

I was there to accept an honor for the Daily Times, but the truth is the honor was mine to be in the presence of a group of people intimately involved in doing good things in Chester every day.