Dare commissioners lament Ukraine situation, call for help

Published 7:58 am Monday, March 14, 2022

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“I can’t help but continue to be upset, quite honestly stressed, troubled, unsettled and brokenhearted at what I see . . .” said Robert E. Woodard, chairman of the Dare County Board of Commissioners.

Woodward opened the March 7, 2022 regular meeting of the board with comments about the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“My heart is heavy. I’m sure yours is as well,” said Woodard.

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“I condemn in the strongest possible terms this unlawful military action by Russian President Putin, which will undoubtedly lead to profound human loss and suffering.”

As the meeting came to a close, board members joined Woodard in making Ukraine comments.

Board Vice Chairman Wally Overman sent an email to U.S. Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis “pleading with them to send any and all weapons” that Ukraine needs. He praised Ukraine fighters. “They have the heart. They just need some help.”

Overman also called for returning to energy independence. “We can produce the oil we need. $4 gallon gasoline is ridiculous when we have the resources to prevent it.”

Some commissioners have direct connections with Ukrainians.

Commissioner Ervin Bateman said “it breaks my heart.” He praised the work ethic of a Ukrainian who worked in his business.

Commissioner Jim Tobin and his spouse Tammy receive daily videos from a jewelry making friend of Tammy’s.

It’s a family connection for commissioner Rob Ross. His grandparents were from a small village in Ukraine.

Commissioner Steve House called for “helping anyway we can.”

At the end of the commissioner comments, Woodard said “I can’t even imagine . . . waking up the next morning and finding myself walking down First Street with the clothes on my back and a backpack, no home, no job, no nothing . . .”