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I feel it is my obligation and duty to have my mother's (Katharine "Kit" Hartshorn) letter to the editor printed as her last community act. She actually wrote this letter the day I took her to the hospital -- community minded to the end.
June 29, 2007
To the Editor:
What is the matter with the Warren Board of Selectmen? It seems that people who do not live on a paved road are dictated to by people who do! If they had to travel on it in the springtime and could not get to town for supplies or to work, and the ambulance, mail carrier, propane trucks, or fire trucks were unable to service them, how would they like it? If they desire to walk their dogs (who crap on our lawns) on dirt, let them find a path in the wilderness.
I am sick and tired of the same mud over 80 years of plowing through it. Many days I had to leave my car a mile out and walk home through mud in the dark. The people who have recently settled in Warren, especially in vacation homes, came to places with paved roads.
I think it is about time the planning commission, select board and environmental and conservation board begin to think of other people than the ones who are always thinking of what they want. I was on these boards 25-plus years and we were not the ones who made life here what it is today! It's all the city people taking over who have changed Warren to what it is now. Just a place where people like me cannot afford to live and have to fight to keep our little niche. I hate to say I no longer have a town even though I'm the Town Historian and was born here 92 years ago, but I am a stranger when I attend town events.
And now I must add a few comments of my own.
I would like to say that Mom was very disturbed and saddened to see what has happened to her town of Warren. No longer are decisions by the town boards being made for the good of the whole community but by the one voice against or the one voice for self-interests only. What happened to "For the good of all"? In the case regarding the paving of 800 feet (yes, only 800 feet) of the Lincoln Gap Road to eliminate the worst mud hole -- which has been the worst mud hole forever -- the board decided to turn down all paving and do a study. Oh joy -- another study. A word for the board: "Trust the advice of your road foreman." He has worked the roads and studied the problems for years. It doesn't take a costly study to know that this mud hole has been here for years and the only solution is to pave! Does this individual who was against it live on the Gap Road? No. Does she have to travel the Lincoln Gap Road at all? No! Were the voices of the people on the Gap Road who were for paving it and were at the meeting listened to? Apparently NOT! We have patiently sat back while other roads in town that we felt were traveled more and were for the better of the community were paved, but now the time has come for Lincoln Gap. I do not believe that anyone, except our hardworking and dedicated road crew, realizes the amount of traffic that travels over this road daily. If you think it doesn't get traveled in the winter and during mud season, just live where I do and count the many cars that park in the road blocking the snowplow and my driveway so those people can snowmobile, cross country ski, walk their dogs, do rocket sledding and snowshoeing, you name it. It has become winter's end of the road recreational wonderland.
Give us old natives a break and pave the 800 feet and forget the costly study.
Rachel Hartshorn McCuin
Rachel Hartshorn McCuin lives in Warren.