His Story Just Needs To Be Told.


I was racking my brain, such as it is, to come up with a topic for this week’s column. As has happened many times, more than I would like, in the years I have been writing Weather Or Not for EDN I drew a complete blank. It sort of relates to the novelist’s writers block, but more closely resembles something else. I met a painter (artist) named Charlie Palmer in Spokane, Washington years ago who told me he was experiencing what he called painter’s block. He had too many of his own paintings drying in his studio. They seemed to fill his brain shutting off his ability to create new work. He had to remove them from his studio to clear his mind of them and start a new painting. That describes what keeps happening to me. I go through most of the week arriving at Thursday with zero, zilch, nada, no clue as to what story I want to tell. I need to have the column completed by Sunday night so that doesn’t leave much time.

Writer's Block
Writer’s Block | Image by writing.inside.tru.ca

Then suddenly, like the light bulb over a cartoon character’s head, a topic explodes in my brain. I’m not sure where the inspiration comes from, but I’d guess it’s my guardian angel allowing me to see through this blank computer screen and grab onto a new idea. That is exactly what happened this time. My brain raced over the previous column topics that I have discussed and they blocked out anything new. Then it came to me while I was on Facebook. I received an invitation to a GoFundMe page for one of my Facebook friends who has been  going through some life-shattering events. His courage under these traumatic conditions is what I want you to see.

I don’t know about you, but there are times when I start to feel sorry for myself for whatever current circumstance is causing me distress. Whether it is physical or mental pain, financial worries or a myriad of other issues, I can feel like I’m going to be overwhelmed. That’s when I see someone like Monte Muirhead and I shake off what’s bothering me and I am buoyed up by his unbelievable attitude toward the severe life trials he is going through. This makes any so-called “mountain” in my life seem like a tiny molehill.

Monte & Tim Joyce
Monte (Left) Visited In Hospital By Tim Joyce (Former AM/Noon Weatherman KVAL-TV | Photo from Monte’s FaceBook page

Let’s start at the beginning. I first met Monte Muirhead back in the mid 1990s. I worked for KVAL-TV and Monte was a reporter for KPIC-TV in Roseburg. We worked for the same company that owned all three stations KVAL in Eugene, KPIC in Roseburg, and KCBY in Coos Bay. If I remember correctly I was in Roseburg for a live weather broadcast (called a Live Shot) at the Douglas County Fair and we met when I stopped by the Roseburg TV studio. Just a quick look at Monte’s resume from that point on shows that in 1999 he moved up to the News Director/Lead Anchor position at KCBY in Coos Bay. From 2004-2007 he was Reporter/Bureau Chief at KOBI in Medford and 2007-2009 reporter/Bureau Chief for KMTR-TV, Eugene. Monte shifted gears by 2012 when he earned his Masters Degree, Curriculum and Teaching; Middle and High School Language Arts endorsement and Social Studies endorsement. Just as his teaching career started Monte was diagnosed with stage 4 Cancer. Not the kind of news he needed to hear. Monte is only in his early 50s and should have many years ahead of him. He went through chemotherapy and surgery which helped for a while, but was told recently that there was only one therapy left to try. The problem was he developed adverse side affects from the drug and had to stop taking it.

Monte's Mother
Monte’s Mom Lucille Esmond Muirhead | Photo from Monte’s FaceBook page

If that wasn’t devastating enough Monte’s mother ended up in the hospital at the same time he was admitted late last year. Sadly she passed away at 2:45 pm December 1, 2015.

All through this ordeal Monte has been updating his condition on his Facebook page. He has even apologized for some of the details, but it was the only way for some of his friends to know how he was doing. Under the circumstances I see no reason for him to apologize for describing his journey, but that is Monte’s way. The current issue is that, not being able to work, he can’t earn any money. His medical costs have been an issue, but now he has run out of money for his day-to-day living expenses. Monte has a long list of friends who have been helping him out when they can. But the time came to go “public” and a gofundme page has been set up to help defray his expenses.

Benefit Concert Flyer
Benefit Concert For Monte Muirhead | Image by Cindy Lou Through Facebook

A special benefit concert is scheduled for March 20th in Sutherlin with many bands volunteering their services to help out. Besides hopefully bringing in money to help out, the concert will be a great celebration of Monte’s life in which he can actually participate. It is wonderful to show appreciation for a person’s life after they have passed on, but this will be a happy celebration that allows everyone to tell Monte how much they appreciate his life and for him to thank them and spend some real quality time with the people he loves and who love him. As anyone who knows Monte would agree he volunteered for just about anything he was ever asked to do and now it’s time for people to step up and help him out. For more details concerning the concert you can go to the Facebook Events page Cindy Lou has posted.

Monte doesn’t know how much time he has left, but he is doing his best to live it with dignity, purpose and gusto. Please don’t let him down.

If you have an idea for a future topic let me know what you would like me to talk about or explain. You can comment below or email me at: [email protected].

Where Did The Week Go…


Where Did The Week Go


Lotto Loser Creates ‘Powerball Reimbursement Fund’ On GoFundMe

Last week, myself and millions of other people failed to win the record $1.5 billion Powerball. The chances of winning were 1 in 292.2 million so naturally I bought one. But a woman in Tennessee was so convinced of winning, despite those odds, she used her entire savings on Powerball tickets. In a stunning development, she didn’t win.

Now with no money, she did the next sensible thing and started a GoFundMe page asking people to give her money after her idiotic gamble. She was asking for $100,000 and instead raised $800 before the account was shut down by GoFundMe. That was $800 too much.

Going by the name Cinnamon Nicole (I can’t make this stuff up), the woman asked people to help a family in need.

GoFundMe Page-GoFundMe
Life is just so hard for poor Cinnamon. | (GoFundMe)

“Please help me and my family as we have exhausted all of our funds. We spent all of our money on lottery tickets (expecting to win the 1.5 billion) and are now in dire need of cash,” said Nicole.

“…I’m certain that we will be able to pick ourselves up from the trenches of this loss and spend another fortune trying to hit it big again!” Wait, what? Please tell me this is a joke right? No one actually gave this woman money right?

She later thanked her supporters on Facebook and suggested that it was all just a joke.

“I thank all of you who actually stuck by me and stood up for me, I appreciate it. People are so quick to judge without knowing or even considering anything other than their point of view,” she wrote. “But this ain’t no serious post… Continue to bash, scorn/scandalize my name.”

Thankfully, after GoFundMe removed the page, they returned all $800 to the respective donors.


Historians in Oregon Uncover 50-year-old Anti-Porn Movie

People with the Oregon Historical Society made an interesting discovery this week when they uncovered an anti-porn propaganda film from the 1960s that was believed to be lost forever.

Entitled Pages of Death (So dramatic), the nearly half-hour long film from 1962 tells the story of a family distraught over the disappearance of their 12-year-old daughter. A pair of detectives take the case and they soon discover that the child was murdered (Spoiler alert) by a local teenager named Paul.

Why did the seemingly innocent and harmless young man do such a horrible thing? Because he had been looking at porn of course!

The detectives find a stash of books, magazines and films so big, Ron Jeremy might just blush. With titles like “Shows All, Tells All” and “Home of the Stripper,” no wonder young Paul was motivated to turn to murder.

Pages of Death-wlox.com
Watch at your own risk. | (wlox.com)

The movie ends with narrator Tom Harmon explaining that “thousands” of young boys just like Paul are at risk of becoming porn-crazed violent maniacs, and encourages viewers to learn more about how to stop the circulation of porn in their communities.

The movie is of course ridiculous and over the top, but Harmon reminds viewers that the fictional story is based on an actual case of a young girl who was brutally raped and murdered. Tragically, cases like this happen every year, but blaming sexually explicit material as the root cause of murder is a giant leap. If that were the case, there would be millions of murderers running around.

Pages of Death is certainly an “interesting” piece of material from back in the day, but it does speak to claims that are still going on today. While the majority of correlations between porn and violence are largely baseless, it’s still important to keep such material away from younger children. Teenagers on the other hand are going to find it one way or another. It’s just a matter of monitoring such activity. But I doubt you have to worry about most of them becoming violent criminals.


Woman Asks Fire Crew to Cut Her Free From Chastity Belt After Losing Key

The Pages of Death story actually segways perfectly into this one and I apologize for all of the sex stories this week (There were so many more to choose from).

A woman in Italy walked into a fire station last week and needed some assistance after she had lost the key to her chastity belt and needed help removing it.

Fire fighters initially thought the 60-year-old woman had been locked out of her house after she told them she needed a padlock opened. But instead she lifted up her sweater to reveal the ancient iron device. They eventually were able to crack open the lock. But the real question is, why was she wearing a chastity belt?

The woman told the firefighters that she wore it because she was worried about the incidents of sexual violence she saw on the news according to Italian news outlets.

Like I said before, Pages of Death may be outdated, but the subject matter is certainly still relevant today.