Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Wed, July 4 2012 at 3:46 PM, Updated: Wed, July 4 2012 at 3:57 PM
As the nation celebrates 236 years of independence, we also celebrate our freedom.
Dorris, California is proud of their flag - and they're also proud of their freedom.
"Freedom of speech" Notes firefighter Randy Cash of CalFire. "It's just nice to know that no matter what, you can say what you think and you're entitled to that opinion, and voicing that opinion."
Freedom to assemble for a public meeting, or even a parade...
Barbara C of Dorris says she's thankful for "Freedom that I can worship God anywhere I want, go to any church I want, and just glorify Him."
"Our right to bear arms." Says Gene Lane of the Butte Valley Friends of the N.R.A. "It gives us the right to protect ourselves against all enemies, foreign and domestic."
"My favorite freedom is to vote." Adds Troy King of Klamath Falls. "I have a right to go out and vote."
"Freedom of the press is important." States Andrew Creasey, a reporter for the Klamath Falls Herald & News. "Because it's important to stay informed. To know what's going on, it's good to have people that aren't told what to do, and have the freedom to cover what they want."
Ian Andreatta of Dorris summed it up...
"My favorite freedom is the freedom to do what you'd like."
Dorris may not have the biggest parade in the nation, but they do have the nation's tallest free-standing flag pole.
And they fly their flag proudly.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.