October 2018 Back Page – Lending A Helping Hand:Posted: October 1, 2018
A few weeks ago an AVEC lineman (John) in Gambell got a call about a member, an Elder named Beulah, who had lost power to her home. He went to check on the problem and discovered that Beulah lived in a small house that was surrounded by a dozen or more 24” deep open pits. Apparently some local residents have taken to engaging in archaeological excavations in an effort to find artifacts that fetch large sums of money on the collector market.
In their burrowing efforts, the entrepreneurs (or vandals) had nicked Beulah’s electric service line in several places and had severed it completely in one of their endeavors, resulting in her loss of power. They had burrowed holes all around her yard and even under her house. John made the observation that it looked like a bombed out moonscape!
Concerned that Beulah’s two freezers might thaw from an extended outage and ruin subsistence foods gifted to her by community members, John borrowed a generator from Bering Straits Regional Housing Authority to keep the freezers running. He then hired two local men and went about the task of restoring service to Beulah. They dug a trench three feet deep to replace the entire eighty foot service wire since it was so badly damaged by the excavators.
The project took three days to complete and Beulah’s neighbors graciously endured several hours of outages during the process. Nobody complained because they understood the need. After reconnecting Beulah’s power, John and his assistants carefully backfilled all of the potholes created by the artifact hunters so that Beulah would not have to worry about falling and possibly hurting herself during the dark of winter.
Beulah’s reaction to John as she looked around her restored yard was a heartfelt “God bless you.” An employee’s caring nature averted a dangerous situation for an elderly AVEC member, reaffirming our commitment to all of our AVEC members that we are all one family!
Board Nominations are Open!
If you or someone you know would make a great director on the AVEC board, please contact us. Nominations are being accepted now for two seats that will be vacated in April 2019. Nominations are due by November 16, 2018. Please contact Amy Murphy at (907) 561-1818 or at amurphy@ avec.org for forms or more information.