Pilot Editorial

Tuesday, December 7, 2004

A great woman and Mr. Goodfellow

Wayne and Betty Forbes have been among the best friends of Mr. Goodfellow for about as long as anyone cares to remember.

They have always been among the first to donate, generously, in good times and tough ones, to make sure that we could put coats on the backs of our needy children.

When they were spirited leaders among the business community in Storm Lake, they shod many a Goodfellow child who otherwise would have gone through winter with tennis shoes full of holes, and Wayne insisted on giving those shoes at such a discount that they may well have happily lost money on every deal.

Goodfellow was just one of their countless community efforts through the years. Betty volunteered to route the deliveries for Meals on Wheels, taught Girl Scouts, and assisted her community in many ways.

The Forbes' are the kind of people you can count on, the kind that give a community its heart. They were kind and respectful to every Goodfellow child - a kid with a dirty face and shabby clothing might as well have been a prince or princess in their eyes and in that store.

We were so sorry to hear of the recent passing of Betty Forbes. She is a part of what has made Storm Lake special, and she will never be forgotten. Certainly not by the many, many years of Goodfellow kids who are now grown up and hopefully helping others out.

In an amazing act of caring, Wayne did what he knew his love would have wanted. He set up her memorial to go to Mr. Goodfellow's kids. Not for a great marker bearing her name, but for a deed bearing her spirit. To think of others at a tearful time like that - well, that's how people like the Forbes' are, and why we need more like them so desperately.

The donations for her - and those kids she so cared for - came rolling in. It will serve dozens of needy kids. People are still coming in the office today, "Just put this in for Betty Forbes," they say. We thank them too.

Every parent of every child who gets a coat this year, be sure to tell them that there's a little Betty in every one of those garments. That means they will be a little tougher than any other, a little more beautiful, and a whole, whole lot warmer.

And this, we think, is what angels must be made of.