It is surprising the many things we take for granted or don’t pay attention to until we need to. This has all come to my attention since the bump in my road of life made me more attentive to those things that are handicap-attentive. 

While I am currently using a wheelchair for distance and a walker for most things. I keep working to improve the situation. 

I, like many people, have noticed the improved status of handicap accessibility. However, I’m also seeing some areas that need refreshing. Case in point First American Bank of Riverside. We pulled up in front and my son-in-law parked in the designated handicapped spot. 

I got into the wheelchair, but I was unable to get up to the sidewalk until I went to the corner to get to the handicapped-accessible ramp to the sidewalk there. Approaching the bank’s front doors, there was no ramp to enter the bank; it seems the ramp was around the corner near the parking lot. Who would have known? But now I know. So around the corner, up the ramp, into the bank and around to the front to do business. 

The above was not meant to be a criticism for the bank and not an intentional thing. It probably never occurred to anyone. So, I started to make some observations on my own. 

Riverside for the most part has easy access to businesses. However, those with ramps need to be cautious in winter with ice. Salt is generously spread but railings would be an added safety. Just a suggestion. Brookfield only has a few places where a step is required to enter. 

So there it is, my critique on handicapped-accessible essentials for businesses. As I said before, it’s surprising what we see and don’t see. 

Condolences to the family of Rev. M. Cyril Nemecek, pastor emeritus of Mater Christi Church/St. Paul VI Parish. Nemecek has been a longtime priest at the church and school. His homilies were poignant, his children’s masses were meaningful and his singing beautiful. 

I talked to him about two months ago and we shared many things, good and bad. I was able to see what I wanted, knowing it would be the last time we would speak. Thank you, and rest in peace.