With spring finally here, I am reminded of an evening phone call that happened to me from an unlikely person way back in 1999. Today, as I scroll through the pictures on social media, this individual comes to my attention in a photograph.
Way back then, my husband, Dan, was traveling a great deal from our new house in Berkeley Springs, WV, to Washington, Baltimore, and Atlanta while running his business. I was a commuter to my job with the City of Frederick, MD. I found myself daily visiting the Genetics and IVF Institute in Fairfax, VA, going through a fertility cycle. In the midst of “egg harvesting,” we came upon a critical element of timing. You see, the exact moment (and pardon me for being scientific here) of ovulation requires an injection of hormones to achieve maximum harvest.
Imagine my turmoil when I got the call from the GIVF doctors telling me that today is the day! It was time for my injection. Back in Berkeley Springs, I was miles away from an open pharmacy!
Having all the necessary meds required, I only lacked a device to administer the shot: a hypodermic needle. No problem. Just call the pharmacy!
Wrong! Living in a remote area like Berkeley Springs, I found ALL the pharmacies closed. However, I had visited that local guy and I knew he lived somewhere in my county.
So, like the crazy woman pumped up on hormones and ripe eggs, I proceeded to call the pharmacist at home. Yes, a complete stranger. Getting the answering machine, I panicked. Rambling on to a message machine (it was 1999), I explained my situation (probably in a little too much detail) and prayed he would receive my message. If not, a complete cycle would be lost in timing what is essentially ovulation day!
Very late in the evening, my phone rang and this complete stranger said “What exactly do you need?” It was Ken Reed.
The next morning, we met bright and early at Reed’s Pharmacy and I was able to receive my injection at the appropriate time. Less than nine months later, Violet Eve Hott, was born.
Since then, Ken has opened a number of pharmacies in our region – all providing local, caring help to families like mine, a local business you don’t find in the big city chains. He also provides employment for many from pharmacist, clerks, to technicians. From a family not unlike yours and mine (the son of a steel worker in Brooke County), Ken not only built a business from hard work, he continues to contribute to our community as a positive role model involved in church and school activities. It is not uncommon to see Ken Reed at the end of a track shooting photos of the students out there giving their all.
Now, as Ken Reed is a candidate for US Congress, this mother of four from the eastern panhandle feels like someone who cares will be in Washington – enough to even personally call me again late at night if I was in need! Many may see the name “Reed” on his businesses and wonder why he would want to be a congressman. When I see "Ken Reed for Congress", I see a husband, father, and friend willing to help and speak for West Virginia and our community.
I’m voting for Ken Reed. I hope you will too.