Traverse City Record-Eagle

Opinion

July 23, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 07/23/2013

Welcome home, John

We recently observed the Fourth of July holiday, the day we celebrate our nation’s freedom and independence.

On June 26 the Record-Eagle printed an article, “MIA area soldier gets full burial.” That was especially meaningful to me since I knew John Burgess, whose remains were recently found and identified. He had been listed as missing in action since his helicopter was shot down in Vietnam 43 years ago. He was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery on July 2, 2013, with full military honors. John graduated from Kingsley High School two years after I did. I graduated with one of his sisters. John was a talented basketball player and had a big smile. I just wish his mother could have lived to see the day John “came home.”

Welcome home, John, and thank you.

James Kolarovic

Kingsley

Substandard work

What a shame we get grossly substandard engineering on our local public works projects. Examples abound.

While designing a new septic disposal plant for the area we were duped by the engineering firm to build a larger-than-necessary facility. Once the plant was built and put to use it collapsed like a house of cards. Next came the construction of a marina to Traverse City. A young man died by electrocution because the design allowed fatal electric currents around the docks. Family grief and lawsuits continue.

Then there was the temporary dam to contain the Boardman River while removing the Brown Street dam. The earthen dam took three weeks to build and when put to use took only 20 minutes to collapse, allowing flooding of home sights downstream. Lawsuits citing bad design are being filed.

Now it’s the new splash pad in the children’s’ play area at Clinch Park. Faulty design allowed children to be showered with toilet water, including solids. Excrement belongs in sewers, not on our children, who reported sickness.

Is there ever to be a public project where the taxpayers get other than inadequate and unsafe design?

John P. Barker

Empire

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