Union Democrat staff

Stolen jewelry

To the Editor:

Recently, my life's collection of jewelry was stolen from practically right under my nose. I write this letter in the hope it will make folks much more aware and careful than I have been.

I am an 83-year-old, hard-of-hearing widow who lives with her daughter and son-in-law in the Sonora area. None of us worried about locking doors until now that the proverbial horse was stolen from the barn.

On the day I speak of, I had gone to a doctor appointment and returned at midday. I took off a gold Celtic Cross necklace (a favorite piece) and placed it in a small bowl on my bookcase with some other gold chains. I also had a cherrywood, free-standing armoire which held the remainder of my jewelry. These pieces held sentimental memories for me. The armoire was present when I returned from my appointment because I had placed a pair of earrings in it.

About 4 p.m. that same afternoon, I returned to my room to find the armoire was missing, along with every piece of jewelry it contained. The gold chains were gone from the bowl, $200 in cash was stolen from my wallet that laid on my bed. Nothing else in the house was stolen.

Whomever committed this crime had to know exactly where I kept my jewelry, as well as the layout of the house (possibly a caregiver or housekeeper). I reported the problem to the sheriff's office. The deputy who answered my call said he would try, however, such crimes are very hard to solve.

Victoria E. Harris


Andy's True Value

To the Editor:

For decades, when I thought about Andy's True Value, the name all ran together. Andy's True Value was a hardware store where you could buy almost anything. Over the years, you could recognize the names of most of the employees because it seemed like they had always been there, just like the store. Andy's had lots of stuff - from lumber to paint to petunias. It also had a good feeling. It was neat, but not too neat. It was big enough, shiny enough, and the employees all looked alert and clean-shaven, but once in a while you could tell someone was a little tired, a little grizzly - just like the rest of us. Andy's True Value was a place that made you feel at home.

My wife and I were shopping at Andy's, buying building supplies at 75 percent off. The same staff was there, but the spirit was gone. We embraced some of them and they cried. Suddenly 75 percent off felt lousy. As I looked around at the empty shelves and the solemn faces, I felt the true value of this store. Andy's True Value was not its stuff, or its sales. Its true value was its employees, their attitude, their service, and the sense of family we all felt when shopping there. Andy's 'true value' was its place in our community, in rural America; a place that is not always duplicated by bigger and better.

Thank you to Steve Anderson, your dedicated employees, and all that you have done to help make Tuolumne County such a great place to live. Your true value will be missed.

Mike Albrecht