My hometown paper covers The Scooter Store
I’m not sure if other states use the term “from away.” Basically, like it sounds, the term refers to people who aren’t from Maine. (Side note: to be from Maine, your family needs to have been here for at least a half-dozen generations. Even then, you’re a little iffy. And your summerhouse on the coast doesn’t count. It actually counts against you.)
My hometown paper, the Kennebec Journal, posted a column online today in its “View From Away” section: “Scooter Store saga a warning to Medicare cheats.”
I was kind of excited to see what my central Maine kindred had to say about this news “from away.” A fresh perspective!
Alas, it is a reprint from our old friends, The San Antonio Express News.
Still, it offers a succinct view and opinion of the goings-on at The Scooter Store this year, including its eventual closure in the coming weeks.
Of course, everyone and their mother has seen a Scooter Store ad (or two) and so this story is relevant to the KJ’s readers. I would say that the story has even more implications for Maine than that, though:
#1: We’re one of the grayest states in the nation. A lot of our citizens rely on HME and rely on Medicare to pay for it.
#2: Mainers know what it means to lose an employer like The Scooter Store.
Maine is full of rivers, streams and trees, making it an ideal location for an industrial-age mill or factory. Toothpicks, shoes, textiles, grain, boards, paper…like a lot of East Coast states, our water powered the creation and transportation of a lot of goods. Unlike a lot of our East Coast neighbors, Maine doesn’t have a whole lot else going for it than natural resources. All the people that converged on the mill towns of Maine during the boom are now struggling as manufacturing goes overseas.
Whole towns in our state still run on the last, gasping breaths of paper mills. Others have died without them.
We know what’s it’s like to go from 2,400+ employees to zero, New Braunfels, and we feel your pain. Best of luck to you.