Citizen Telegram Letter to the Editor – Jan. 9, 2014 |

Citizen Telegram Letter to the Editor – Jan. 9, 2014

Glass half full?

We sold the Rusty Cannon in 2007 to Williams Co. for $6.75 million, but the sale didn’t come to fruition because the city wouldn’t assure Williams of some issues. So we sold the Rusty Cannon in 2012 for $1.75 million and actually closed in February 2013. Am I moaning? No! I am thankful the buyer was able to close, I am thankful to be relieved from a struggling business. I’m thankful for the absence of big mortgages that would have prevented this greatly-reduced sales number.

I’m thankful for the 30 years we had in Rifle. We had 965,000 room nights available; I don’t know the overall occupancy, but we served well over a half million guests. I’m thankful for the faithful employees in those 30 years.

I had a good friend who was a bombardier on US B-25s, flying from Italy, up the Adriatic, over the Brenner Pass and dropping loads of bombs on German facilities during World War II. He told me he had one prayer on every one of his many missions: “God, will you help me get back to the USA with two hands, two feet and my head?” He got to, as he viewed it, “peek” into the 21st century, and died in March 2000 with two hands, two feet and his head. He was daily thankful for that and for the blessings around him, in spite of basically being what he would be classified today as poor. Bill lived for years in an apartment above my dad’s store in the McClaren Building and worked for Union Carbide. He was one of many in Rifle who, by today’s standards, were impoverished but didn’t know it, and who lived peaceful and thankful lives during the 40s and 50s.

Another man, Dick, mentally handicapped but happy to have a job setting pins at the bowling alley in Rifle, invited me up to his room in the Midland Hotel one day to show me the new pair of jeans he was able to buy at one of Rifle’s main street stores. No government program necessary for Dave; just hard work and frugal living.

Have a great year.

Bob Cross

Ft. Worth, Texas

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