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  • Feeling winded?

    Mar 28, 2024

    by Andrew Ellsworth, MD “Well, doc,” the patient was telling me, “I get winded so easily now. I can hardly go to the mailbox without stopping to catch my breath. It did not used to be that way. Do you think something is wrong?” Many of us have experienced shortness of breath. After a period of inactivity, such as winter or a busy month, when we decide to exercise again, it may be easier to feel winded. That experience can be due to deconditioning, feeling out of shape. A good remedy for that is a gradual increase in exercise, helping us to r...

  • Spring burn planned

    Mar 21, 2024

    In cooperation with Hot City Outdoor Alliance and the Thermopolis Fire Department, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department is planning a prescribed burn at the Wedding of the Waters Public Access Area near Thermopolis later this week. On the morning of March 21, crews plan to burn one half acre of phragmites, an invasive perennial reed grass, along the shoreline of the Bighorn River, upstream and downstream of the boat ramp. Ignition is tentatively planned for 10 a.m. The prescribed burn is weather dependent. Sportspersons should be aware that acc...

  • Site of proposed shooting complex questioned

    Mar 21, 2024

    To Commissioner Galovich et al.: It’s come to my attention that County Commissioners have decided that if Hot Springs County’s bid for the shooting complex is successful that it will be sited west of the Red Lane neighborhood. This was also where you were going to site the trash transfer station. My question is why are you intent on sitting noisy, noxious enterprise above a quiet housing area? I’ve heard that a rifle shot fired from the proposed site is no noisier that the train going by. While that may be true the train goes through a few t...

  • UNConstitutional republic review

    Mar 21, 2024

    Last week’s paper reported that the Hot Springs County Republican Party passed three resolutions. The first, requiring a return to hand counting ballots for all elections in Wyoming, should be summarily dismissed. All studies show that the error rate for voting machines is much lower than hand counts of ballots. Hand counting ballots would make Wyoming elections less secure. If you have questions regarding the safety of our voting machines and elections processes, please visit with our County Clerk who can outline all of the election p...

  • Five myths about Social Security

    Mar 21, 2024

    by Sam Shumway AARP Wyoming State Director For most of us, Social Security is – or will be – essential for helping to cover daily living expenses and pay bills as we get older. The bottom line is that Social Security is your money, earned through a lifetime of hard work. Yet there are persistent misconceptions about its long-term financial stability and how it works. Here are facts behind five of the most stubborn Social Security myths. Myth #1: Social Security is going broke. The facts: Social Security will not run out of money, as long as wor...

  • Freedom of information

    Mar 14, 2024

    During National Sunshine Week, we celebrate freedom of information (FOI) laws and efforts to use and ensure the effectiveness of those laws to get the information we need as self-governing citizens. Over a century ago, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, stated that “Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.” The Florida Society of Newspaper Editors launched Sunshine Sunday in 2002 in response to efforts by some Florida legislators to create scores of new exemptions to the state’s public records law. It was decided that the i...

  • Wyoming Boys' School is last hope for troubled kids

    Mar 14, 2024

    The recent lawsuit against the Boys’ School is a blow to youth welfare in our state and cruel, destructive slander against some of our neighbors, in my opinion. As a former employee at WBS, I saw firsthand how dedicated WBS staff are to helping young men. The alleged physical abuse is so out of character for the men primarily mentioned as to be laughable if not so vicious. Those dorm staff put themselves in harms way each day, take grotesque verbal abuse and physical attacks, but still are dedicated to giving young offenders a last chance to b...

  • Check of counterfeits

    Mar 7, 2024

    by Zac Taylor, Powell Tribune A $100 bill remains an extraordinary piece of currency to hold. Even in an age of inflation, a Benjamin still represents some serious dough. These days, the bill is also a veritable work of art, with various designs, a hologram and textures. Those are there, of course, to make it hard for counterfeiters to work, but it seems locally a few have gotten through to local businesses. The Powell Police Department has reported three instances of counterfeit $100 bills ending up in the hands of tellers who spotted the...

  • Transparency demands accuracy!

    Mar 7, 2024

    I am disappointed with the way the Town of Thermopolis released the officer cam video of April 28, 2023, regarding the officer-involved shooting. The video was narrated by the Town and stated the officer had permission to cite or arrest. This is misleading at best. I refer you to the October 12, 2023, Independent Record article in which the Wyoming DCI Special Agent report is given in its entirety. Clearly, the officer in question did not have permission to illegally break down a door without a warrant, as laid out in the DCI investigation....

  • Leaping into March

    Feb 29, 2024

    The Independent Record staff is providing you with five papers in February this year. Leap year occurs every four years with Feb. 29 being designated as Leap Day. For us to print five papers in February, the 1st and the 29th had to fall on a Thursday, which is very rare. But what is a leap year? According to NASA, although our calendars usually consist of 365 days, it actually takes approximately 365.2422 days for Earth to orbit the sun. Research indicates that in 45 B.C., Roman emperor Julius Caesar, with the help of astronomer Sosigenes,...

  • Is this still the land of the free?

    Feb 29, 2024

    A Visitor From The Past: by Thelen Paulk I had a dream the other night, I didn’t understand. A figure walking through the mist, with flintlock in his hand. His clothes were torn and dirty, as he stood there by my bed. He took off his three-cornered hat, and speaking low, he said: “We fought a revolution, to secure our liberty. We wrote the Constitution, as a shield from tyranny. For future generations, this legacy we gave. In this, the land of the free and home of the brave. “The freedom we secured for you, we hoped you’d always keep. But tyran...

  • Legislature in full swing

    Feb 22, 2024

    Cheyenne is around a five hour drive from Thermopolis, but the work of our state’s legislature will affect us in Hot Springs County as well as every county around the state. There are a number of important issues facing Wyoming and our Legislatures. Property taxes, voting regulations and foreign ownership of Wyoming land are just a few of the topics that are keeping us all interested as they move through the process. As a reminder, the Wyoming Legislature’s website can be used to track legislation and participate in policymaking during the 202...

  • No man is an island

    Feb 22, 2024

    by Andrew Ellsworth, MD “No man is an island, entire of itself, every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.” This is the beginning of a poem from 1624. In it, the poet John Donne appreciates how humans are all connected. Indeed, humans are social beings, and social connection is a factor in our health. We all know the importance of a healthy diet and exercise for our health. We are getting better at understanding the importance of mental health. One thing we do not discuss much, however, are the benefits of social connection. Our...

  • Legislature convenes

    Feb 15, 2024

    The 67th Wyoming Legislature convened in a joint session of the Wyoming Senate and House of Representatives on Monday, Feb. 12, during the first day of legislative proceedings of the 2024 Budget Session. Gov. Mark Gordon delivered his State of the State address, followed by the State of the Judiciary address, delivered by Wyoming Supreme Court Chief Justice Kate M. Fox. We encourage you to use the Wyoming Legislature’s website to track legislation and participate in policymaking during the 2024 Budget Session. The web address is

  • Citizen submits department of education information

    Feb 15, 2024

    Well the statistics are in from the Wyoming Department of Education for the 2022/2023 school year. How did our School District really do, not what we are told by our school administrators? Ralph Witters Elementary: School performance rating / small school decision – meeting expectations Achievement Target Level – below target Achievement Normal Category – below average Thermopolis Middle School either meets or exceeds expectations in all categories Thermopolis High School was overall categorized as meeting expectations although in the categ...

  • GOP quarterly meeting information

    Feb 15, 2024

    by Leyann Gomez Sharon Hall, Scott Brown, and Raelene Wood along with other folks of Lovell hosted the Wyoming Republican Party’s quarterly meeting at the Community Center. All of the counties were represented. Saturday’s session got off to business despite snowy conditions for attendees from Worland and Thermopolis with a tricky drive. National Committeeman Corey Steinmetz read a polished letter from Senator Barrasso to the gathering. State Committeewoman Carla Klopfenstein from Sheridan read a letter from Congresswoman Harriet Hageman, who ha...

  • Fundamental functions: Ear, nose, throat

    Feb 15, 2024

    by Debra Johnston, MD I confess that occasionally even doctors get squeamish. Or perhaps more honestly, this doctor does. My personal list has gotten pretty short, but one of the things that still makes me squirm is something I nevertheless frequently recommend to my patients. So what is this mysterious and rather ominous medical recommendation? Nasal saline irrigation. The practice of rinsing the nose out with liquid probably originated centuries ago in India, and it remains part of spiritual ritual as well as traditional medicine around the...

  • Taking steps toward democracy

    Feb 8, 2024

    by Kimball Shinkoskey, Cody Enterprise I think most people would agree that democracy is under threat by forces on the left or on the right, or in the middle, or in a neighboring state or in our own state, or in the schools, or under the bed maybe or in the sky. Somewhere, somehow, forces either organized or just naturally occurring are stealing away what our ancestors had that made this country great. So, what would a pro-democracy movement look like in the United States, or in your state or town? I think it would be something very humble and...

  • These boots were made for walking

    Feb 8, 2024

    by Jill Kruse, DO Winter weather has finally arrived this year. Getting outside for some activity, even in winter, is great for your overall health. However snow, ice, and cold can turn a stroll in the park into an obstacle course. Having proper footwear is not only important for warmth, but also the wellbeing of your feet. Choosing the correct boots for the elements could mean the difference between enjoying the outdoors and needing an urgent care visit. What makes good footwear for enjoying the outdoors safely? Good traction is essential for...

  • Newspapers remain a key record for government notices

    Feb 1, 2024

    Everyday, as I walk from the editorial department in the back of the office to the breakroom to get coffee or tea, I pass by wall shelving holding bound copies of every edition of the paper down to the early days, more than 100 years ago. It’s a repository of information on the community, from notes on high school grads now serving in one of the century’s big wars, how the local high school teams performed, what new policies the city council or school board were enacting. It’s also a repository of information from local governments, from count...

  • Reminder about first amendment rights

    Feb 1, 2024

    The purpose of this letter to the editor is to clarify several points about our rights under the constitution. The First Amendment reads “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” What does this mean? England has a church religion, the Church of England. The United States does not allow for such a state faith. This law, however, has been interpreted by some as the “freedom from religion,” or the separation of church and state. Recently, our current President spoke from the pul...

  • Why routine dental visits matter

    Feb 1, 2024

    by John Bisson, DDS Routine visits to the dentist are key to maintaining overall health. Preventive dental care starts at home. We advise patients to brush twice a day, usually in the morning and before bed, for two minutes followed by flossing. Eating healthy is also crucial to maintaining oral health. Sugary foods and beverages are key factors in tooth decay. Acid is produced when the bacteria in your mouth break down sugar. That acid dissolves the tooth surface leading to tooth decay. Preventive dental care continues by visiting the dentist...

  • Do you have grit?

    Jan 25, 2024

    In psychologist Angela Duckworth’s New York Times bestseller “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance”, she shares her insight on the ability to achieve. Duckworth shows us that it is not talent or gifting that gets us to the places we want to be, but our own willpower and desire to succeed. In fact, those who have “natural” skills end up giving up or quitting far faster than someone who has a deep passion for what they are doing. In other words, someone who has grit. Yet, one of the key dynamics for an individual or an organizat...

  • Pack it in, pack it out

    Jan 25, 2024

    I would like to address a few behaviors that have bothered me for some time. First is drivers spinning “cookies” on roads and parking and pullout areas. This tears up the surface, and these areas become mud holes in wet weather. In some places this occurs off-road and destroys vegetation as well. As a related item, some drivers pull off the road to test their 4WD vehicles in snow and mud. Ruts in the soil never go away. Another item is littering in general, especially by recreational target shooters. Please pick up your spent cartridge cas...

  • Even in darkness you can be found

    Jan 25, 2024

    by Nicola Park LAC, LPC-MH “I’ve lost everything…but I just can’t stop”. “Once I take that first drink that is all I think about”. “I use it to take the pain away”. These are some of the many things you might hear someone who struggles on a daily basis with an addiction say. Addiction is a chronic disease that can physically and mentally change a person from who they once were. When we hear the word addiction, we might automatically go to ‘the person on the street looking to score their next fix’, but these are people who struggle every minute...

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