To the editor:
In 2002 a young Rotary Exchange student from Washington state, Etta Turner, was killed in a tragic bus accident in Bolivia. A fellow Rotary Exchange student from Negaunee, Sarah Houghton, survived the accident and went back to help with a new "Comedor" (preschool) named in Etta's honor. It has since grown into more than sixteen "Comedors" in neighboring villages and has expanded into health education and clean water and public sanitation projects. It has become one of our Rotary District's favorite international projects.
Last fall one of our Rotary Exchange students in Minocqua, Wisconsin, (Tomas from Argentina) was involved in a tragic car accident, killing the driver (his host mother) and Tomas. The newly formed Interact Clubs in both Houghton and Hancock High Schools organized a "Hunger Banquet" to raise money for the Etta Project to be donated in Tomas' memory. Fifteen Rotary Exchange students from Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula, plus four U.S. Exchange students going out next year assisted in putting on the Banquet. Over $500 was raised!
We would like to thank the people who came to the dinner and all those who donated to the cause. We would especially like to thank Grace United Methodist Church for allowing us to use their wonderful facility and Habaeros for donating their delicious frijoles (beans). We would also like to thank Mr. Tony Schwaller for his decorations from Bolivia, Kyle Krym for his presentation on Bolivia, and Christopher Walkons and Hayden Henderson for their presentation on the water and sanitation projects that MTU's Engineers Without Borders have done in Bolivia with the Etta Project. It was an incredible evening! Thank you all.