Each year, as we take time to enjoy our national day of Thanksgiving, we stop to consider all the many blessings in our lives. As I reflect on the people in my life, and the community Wanda and I have made our home, the list of blessings is extensive and varied.

Each year, as we take time to enjoy our national day of Thanksgiving, we stop to consider all the many blessings in our lives. As I reflect on the people in my life, and the community Wanda and I have made our home, the list of blessings is extensive and varied.

On Monday, the city of Blue Springs and the University of Missouri took the next step toward the realization of the Missouri Innovation Park. This is a development that each of us in Blue Springs can be thankful for as it will bring new, quality jobs to our community. I am also thankful for The Examiner’s excellent article on Tuesday. The accurate description of the MIP letter of agreement and the impact on our community was well written and detailed.

Many of our residents are thankful that the long-vacant Kmart building is gone and replaced with a larger Hy-Vee Grocery. The 140 new employees are thankful for the opportunity for employment. While there is still plenty of work to be done, a lot of progress has occurred at the intersection of U.S. 40 and Missouri 7.  

I am thrilled with the new QuikTrip on North Missouri 7. Not only did it replace the vacant former gas station on that corner, I can now shop at PriceChopper and use my gasoline rewards on my way to work at the CPros building, next to the Paul Consiglio Center. I am thankful that CPros has this permanent home in which to serve our community’s computer and software needs.

A many of you know this is the first Thanksgiving since the death of my father. I am so thankful for the many years of love, wisdom and humor he shared with me and thankful my mother is here with us and continues to share in my life. Of course, I’m thankful for my wonderful daughters, Ashley and Crystal, and for my amazing wife, Wanda. I am thankful for my brother and sister who shared my childhood and for the five sisters and three brothers in my biological family whom I have had the privilege to meet and love over the last nine years.

The opportunity to meet my biological parents nine years ago, especially my biological mother, ranks very high on my thankful list. When I think of the sacrifices she made to ensure that I had the opportunities she was unable to provide, “thank you” seems so inadequate. This fall, she is undergoing treatment for uterine cancer. I promised her that if she lost her hair during her treatments I would lose mine so she wouldn’t have to go through baldness alone.

This past weekend, the chemotherapy caused her hair to fall out, so first thing Monday morning Mike Courtney of Courtney Bros Barber & Shaving Parlor in Blue Springs graciously shaved the hair from my head. I am thankful for Mike, his business and friendship. I am also thankful for my wool hat!

I hope you each have a safe and blessed Thanksgiving holiday!