Editor:

Over the past month, Front Royal and Warren County have encountered a financial crisis that threatens the balance in our community. This crisis affects the trust we have in our elected and appointed officials, which could further jeopardize the faith that we have had in our systems and in our fellow citizens.

As an independent business organization, The Front Royal Independent Business Alliance (FRIBA) encourages all of our community to be more level-headed and compassionate about our current state of affairs. We must remain strong, use our character, our leadership and our discipline as examples for others to follow. We must have faith and understanding and avoid the madness of the crowd during this difficult period. We need to find solutions through facts, not repeating rumors. The results of these compassionate actions will help us heal and become stronger.

We encourage everyone to study the issues, avoid the negative crowds and social media mudslinging, and strive for the positives. We need to count our blessings, lean on each other for support and compassion. Together we can learn from the mistakes from this period of time and seek to improve what we have. Be a constructive leader, a sound business person and a faithful follower of the good that will result.

We ask that you put aside the pettiness and blatant criticism of the innocent, their families and their rumored guilt. Rumors can hurt families and the county’s overall reputation. The courts will find the guilty and they will suffer, rightfully so. We ask that you also remain vigilant as good citizens, so that these mistakes will not ever happen again.

Remember your family, your faith and your community and share your kindnesses every day! Together, we as a community, will survive and become stronger.

The Board of Directors of FRIBA: George McIntyre, Craig Laird, Arline Link, Patricia Moore, Michael Swauger, Michael McCool