Archive for April 20, 2010

The Key to the City -A Thank You

No it wasn’t the Key to the City of London, but the honor bestowed was just as humbling and gratefully accepted as if it had of been. London my home of my youth has given way to Lorain home of my “coming of age”.

Mayor Krasienko apparently made a touching speech on February 13th at DeLucas. In my early days of emotional incontinence I couldn’t make the event, but before the people gathered that evening I was awarded the Key to the City of Lorain.

I met with Mayor Krasienko ( he was forewarned he could end up with a blubbering woman on his hands- but he said he could handle it ) for lunch a week ago Monday at the Rose Cafe where he quietly presented me with a lovely engraved plaque for a “positive impact”. He did end up with a blubbering woman!

Although I am deeply humbled and honoured I wanted to accept this plaque on behalf of “Everyone” who has made
Photo Mark Teleha
Settlers’ Watch,

Veterans Park and

Charleston Pioneer Cemetery,

The Black River Bicentennial and

Charleston Village possible.


So I geared myself to reign in the tears and go to City Council on Monday night to thank those who do care for this city we call home.

Well it wasn’t to be my emotions were dragged farther down a bottom less pit and another gut wrenching kick to my soul took place.

However, I did send a written thank you to the City of Lorain on Charleston Village letterhead and here it is:

Mayor A. Krasienko and the City of Lorain
Lorain City Hall
200 West Erie Avenue,
Lorain, Ohio 44052 April, 13th 2010

Dear Mayor Krasienko, Administration and City Council,

Re Key to the City of Lorain

I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank you for the great honor in receiving the Key to the City of Lorain. Although it is my name on the plaque, I know that everyone is aware that without the wonderful people who support the ideas and do the “real work”, I could not accomplish anything; this also includes those who are elected officials and those who also work for the City of Lorain as well as the many volunteers of Charleston Village and her sister organizations .

I will accept the Key to the City on their behalf and look forward to working with all of you in the future and continuing to have a positive impact in our community . Once again thank you for this award I am humbled and grateful.

Yours sincerely

Loraine Ritchey
Co Chair Charleston Village Society Inc


April 20, 2010 at 10:52 pm 19 comments

I didn’t know my son! Chris Ritchey

A OPEN POST TO Dr. ANGELA (LOMBARDI) Ritchey MURPHY DO – just incase she decides to read this blog 😉

Well that came as a bit of a surprise today to say the least, but that is what his wife of just over a year informed me today.

You see contrary to the opinion of his wife. My son and I had a very, very, very open and honest relationship.( and I have his last letter to prove what I say ) BUT today after a lot of legal dealings ( more on that in the next post) my husband received some of Chris’ hunting equipment.
Angela Lombardi ( ritchey)

Stuck on the top of the box was another note from Angela Lombardi ( ritchey) who apparently ignores this blog for the most part 🙂 ( methinks she doth protest too much )

However, she felt she had to tell me :

there is one thing I would like to clear up though Chris was never mad at me when he was in Texas.

I never said he wasI can tell you now though he was disappointed and hurt Angela that you chose to leave him in Texas with me ( sorry I saw the note you left him in drawer when I was looking for some paper)

Yes! you see I knew my presence in Texas only confirmed that he was dying of Cancer, I was a constant reminder that he needed a care giver ( although you felt he could manage on his own to deal with side effects of a trial drug and Cancer) he would’ve preferred that it would have been his wife, not his mother to be with him.

As a wife I couldn’t have left my husband knowing that he was living under a death sentence and had been since August 29th -but that was your choice.

I , for one was glad to spend the last weeks of Chris life with him . I would walk through fire for him , he always knew that – Yes! I loved him intensely he was my son I would have enabled his happiness even when it meant sacrificing my own.

You say in your “note” (you are so good at “notes’) that he wasn’t going to correct the impression that he was mad at you because he was tired of arguing. He never gave me the impression he was mad at you.

I know he was angry at me and Nikki in Texas which was directly attributable to you because he felt we left you out of the loop when it came to travel arrangements on October 8th .

He wanted to drive the truck back . I told you in an email ( which I have ) that it wasn’t a good idea him driving, he was having difficulty due to the side effects of SGN35 and I thought you should know since obviously you had been in Ohio since Sept 10th and hadn’t see the problems he was having even driving to Target let alone 1,700 miles.

I asked how many air line tickets you needed and what date as I wanted to book them ( I also have those emails) because the price kept going up daily – the earlier you book the less money – and since we weren’t made of money it was a concern since his family were picking up the costs.

I didn’t mention this to Chris as you are right he needed to put all his energy into healing. YOU ignored me , but told Chris we hadn’t included you in any of the arrangements.

He was very angry at me and his sister. WE had the fight in Texas he was furious we had made arrangements without your knowledge. NOW I wonder why he would think that? I confronted him as to why he was so angry at me and Nikki…. and he said :

“You didn’t include Angela”


“What are you talking about – I included Angela

CHRIS No you didn’t !


Would you like to see the emails?


Yes! I would”


So you are calling me a liar ?


” Don’t give me that F…. shit if I want to see the email then I must be calling you a liar. There aren’t any emails Angela doesn’t lie!

I then pulled up the emails all of them sent to you –


Look at the dates and times Chris … now tell me I’M the one that lied…… she says here she wants to talk to you about it did she?


Well she has been busy


she talks to you 4 or 5 times a day she couldn’t mention it but she could let you believe that Nikki and I didn’t include her?

He broke down Angela … cried… did that to him by trying to lie by omission … not me ….I held him and he said:

“did you ever think that I want to see something of the country if I am going to be dead in two years.”

My heart broke for him – I cried and we held on tight to each other and I said

Chris none of us know when we will die, the way you are driving lately we could end up dead on the way to hospital tomorrow ….

he laughed a little and I said

Chris, I know the SGN35 is working, the lump on your neck isn’t visible and you haven’t coughed since Sept 21st.

That was the night he went and checked the lumps on his neck for the first time in weeks. Remember that phone call Angela – you called Nikki and said
“I wonder why he did that all of a sudden” he hadn’t been checking on the lumps til tonight ? Now you know !

I told him that I would find a way for him to drive that damned truck back . Then we phoned Jim and Nikki Jim said he would take a week off work and drive down to Texas with Chris and fly back and he did.

The rest of the story you know , because YOU Angela ( Dr. of Medicine) wouldn’t listen to the Drs. at MD Anderson and my begging you to please fly back and decided that

Chris will be just fine driving back to Ohio.” We will take it easy”

Well you got as far as Jackson Mississippi when he collapsed and the rest is history. I had said to him the last thing the morning of the test results:

Chris no matter the news good or bad please rethink driving back, you can leave the truck with JD ( Houston) or let me keep the apartment in Houston for the next couple of weeks – you have to drive back to Ohio all that way and then turn around and fly back in two days after that

Chris said he would think about it , he called and said that you and he decided he could drive.

He called me from the hospital bed at SouthPointe and said

“Mum, I am appreciative of everything you did in Texas

I said

I know that Chris you don’t have to thank me

He continued :

But I was so mean to you

I responded :

Chris I am your mother , you are allowed to be mean to me , I understand what you are going through , the lack of control over your own life , the anger – it is OK I love you !

He said :

You were right I should have stayed in Houston, I shouldn’t have come back to the apartment there are so many bad memories – I should’ve stayed and I love you mum I should’ve listened

I said

Chris it is no good in hindsight we will get through this I will see you Friday . I love you

As always he said

I love you too”

I did see Chris and cooked his last meal for him and he told me as tears squeezed from the corner of his eyes – he felt he was pathetic and that he never wanted to be pathetic and the worst feeling in the world was not being able to breathe.

I cuddled him , got him his drink , helped him go to the toilet whilst you were at work that last night he was home. I had to be there to let the guy in with the oxygen. I watched my son trying to be brave and hopeful.

Remember that night Angela you and your parents were making arrangements to put him on a damned train to Texas. You felt ( even with your medical background) this young man who couldn’t make it to the bathroom would be able to leave at three in the morning on a train to Chicago, change trains, to Austin and it was only a three-hour drive to Houston from there…..

Personally I am not sure what you people use for brains at times. I promised Chris if he was well enough to travel I would get him to Texas

He said

you can’t drive to Texas

– I said

I will get you there if I have to hire an ambulance and drive it myself.

He then slept for a little and I sat up with him all that night.

You state that “he would defend you when you did not deserve it and would be the first person to put you in your place when he had enough

That is interesting 🙂 as Chris knew full well I could take care of myself but IF he did defend me I wonder WHO it was that felt I didn’t deserve to be defended YOU PERHAPS??? 🙂

Maybe I didn’t know everything about my son- you have set me in search of him and I will let his own words and works speak for him but unfortunately I know you and my worst suspicions of you have been confirmed.

You must have known how hard it would be to receive his personal belongings today , the smell of him still on those jackets and to write your little note of self-justification that was meant to hurt.

You can never justify what you and your family did to this family . Your innocent facade crumbling with every little word that you write that tries to take Chris and who he was from those that loved him. You won’t do it Angela . You obviously didn’t love Chris at least not as much as it seems you love the idea of YOU!

I don’t understand Angela what is it that you want – why this need to take Chris and who he was from us – to make us 2nd guess- We have lost our son and brother isn’t that enough pain Angela why this need to inflict more?

I know more of your relationship than even you are aware of as I said my son and I talked openly, honestly -I knew his faults and he knew mine – why you feel the need to try an take what we have left of Chris from us is puzzling – what gratification do you get from it? What purpose does it serve?

To be continued …..

April 20, 2010 at 1:11 am 37 comments



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April 2010