Letters - July 07, 2007

Cancer society gets a boost from community

The 9th East Sussex Relay for Life to benefit the American Cancer Society was held recently at Holly Lake Campsites. With the help of the East Sussex County Community, we were able raise over a quarter of a million dollars ($250,000) for cancer research and patient services. On behalf of the entire committee, I would like to thank the following for their generous support in the fight against cancer:

Thank you to Tanger Outlet Center for being not only a sponsor but also an inspiration to other organizations to get involved in the community.

Thank you to our partner, Beebe Medical Center Tunnell Cancer Center, for your outstanding contribution in our fight over the past nine years and for always remembering that cancer survivors are special people.

To our Host Sponsor, Holly Lake Campsites, and to the R.A. Raley family, the cooperation of the entire staff makes the planning of our relay easier and the beautiful surroundings remind us that life is very precious.

To our Hope Sponsor, The Villages at Five Points, because without hope we cannot succeed.

To our Gold Sponsors — Burton Realty Inc., Mick’s Classic Carpet, Atlantic Theaters, Teller Wines, Redi-Call Communications, Tunnell Companies, Jack Lingo Real Estate, Punkin Chunkin Assoc. and Suzanne Landon/Jack Lingo Realtors.

American Legion Post #28 for sponsoring our Cancer Survivors Reception. Survivors are our inspiration and you have honored them in a special way.

To McDonald’s, Casellas, Jakes Seafood House, Nicola Pizza, Pepsi Cola Co, Seaford Ice, and Donut Connection – thank you for helping us nourish our participates and cancer survivors.

Boy Scout Troop 105, your contributions in making it all work is appreciated. The hours you volunteer truly make a difference.

Thank you to all our participants for making this the best relay ever — without you there would not be a relay. Maybe it will be one of the dollars raised that will make the difference in finding a cure.

A very, very special thanks to our cancer survivors — your courage is truly an inspiration to all of us.

There are so many people, organizations and community groups that we cannot mention them all, but know that you are very much a part of making this event so successful and we thank you.
While we take a moment to pause and give thanks, we are already planning next years Relay, May 11-12, 2007. We will continue until there is a cure. Thank you, and we hope you will join us next year in our fight against cancer.

Kenny Hopkins, Chairman
East Sussex Relay for Life

Reader: Clean sweep needed in elections

This year DNREC Secretary John Hughes told the Delaware Joint Finance Committee that Sussex County needs a good storm water management program. After reading about the flooding in Seaford, I see what he meant.

State Sen. Thurman Adams Jr. (D-19th) represents the people of Seaford, but as far as I know he and the Sussex County Council have done nothing to improve storm water management in Sussex. Their failure is evident in the photos of flooded out homes and entire communities in Seaford.

It’s time for a clean sweep. The terms of Adams, Rep. Ben Ewing (R-35th), Rep. Biff Lee (R-40th) and Councilman Vance Phillips’ (R-5th) expire this year.

We must find good managed-growth candidates to run against these politicians before the July 28 deadline for Democrats and Republicans to file for office. Sept. 1 is the deadline for minor parties to nominate candidates, and for the Democratic and Republican parties to nominate candidates for offices where no one filed as a candidate for their party for an office.

The rest of the election schedule is as follows:

• Aug. 4 is the deadline, at noon, for a candidate to withdraw and get back his/her filing fee.

• Aug. 19 is the deadline to register to vote in order to be eligible to vote in the Sept. 12 primary election.

• Aug. 28 is the deadline for military and overseas citizens to register to vote in order to be eligible to vote in the Sept. 12 primary election.

• Sept. 12 is the primary election. Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m.

• Oct. 14 is the last day to register to vote in order to be eligible to vote in the Nov. 7 general election.

• Oct. 23, is the last day for military and overseas citizens to register to vote in order to be eligible to vote in the Nov. 7 general election.

• Nov. 7 is the general election.

Joan Deaver
Rehoboth Beach

Double Bridges a dangerous speedway

My husband and I moved to this area about seven years ago. At that time Road 363, a.k.a. Double Bridges Road (now Alt. 54), appeared to be a quiet little country road. It didn’t take but a few days for us to realize that it was anything but that. The name should be changed to the Sussex County Speedway.

For the past seven years, we, along with many of our neighbors, have been calling the State Police regarding this dangerous situation. They have jurisdiction over this road. They promised to look into it. We wrote to Shirley Price, and she worked with DelDOT to lower the speed limit. She listened and tried to bring some resolution to the problem. The limit was lowered from 50 mph to 45 mph.

The situation has worsened, if that’s possible. Visitors have no idea that this road is not a peaceful quiet little country road. It is a lawless speedway. Many of the people who drive down the road now have absolutely no regard for anyone, even themselves. The solid and double solid lines mean nothing. The speed limit means nothing.

I’m not sure what does hold value for these people. It certainly isn’t the people they endanger each and every day. Some of the vehicles go so fast that it’s hard to tell if the culprit is a truck or a car. When a vehicle, any vehicle, roars down the road at these speeds, it becomes a lethal weapon.

We live off the stretch that runs across from a section of the Assawoman Wildlife Refuge, but the strip extends well beyond this location. It is extremely dangerous to pull onto the road from our development, and just as dangerous to pull off the road into the development — a life threatening experience most days.

It is a year-round problem, so it can’t be blamed on the tourists. The vehicles that barrel down the road range from dump trucks and pickups to SUVs, vans, sedans, and motorcycles. The common thread that seems to weave thru this mosaic of drivers is “See how fast you can go!” Any time of the night or day, you can see and hear the roaring speeding vehicles.

What is it going to take to get someone’s attention — a horrific accident involving a school bus? It could happen, or an equally tragic accident involving people coming in and out of Ocean Farm and the other developments popping up along the way.

Hitting a deer at those speeds would be a life-ending experience. These drivers don’t seem to know or care that they are endangering themselves and anyone who is unfortunate enough to be on the road with them. Maybe wiping out a group of cyclists would do it, perhaps joggers, or those on Rollerblades, or folks just out for a stroll with their dogs.

Mark my words, it is going to happen. Someone is going to die on this road and it probably won’t be the driver of the earthbound rocket. It will be an innocent driver, cyclist, jogger, walker, who was unfortunate enough to be on the road that day.

No family living on this road wants to have to say “I told you it would happen.” It doesn’t have to. The speedway needs to be dealt with before it’s too late.

Edythe Becker
Ocean Farm

Replenishment efforts a big disappointment

My family and I just returned from the Delaware shore, Fenwick Island, yesterday. We have owned property at the beach for many years. We are saddened and disappointed by the expenditure of our taxpayer money on the beach replenishment. I believe that our property values have suffered due to the added sand. Here is why:

(1) There are no waves or sand bar. All my kids and I want to do is ride waves and surf before and after the lifeguards are on duty. Now we have to drive to Ocean City, Md., and spend the day and afternoon in Maryland. This is a hassle and is caused by the dumping of sand and refiguring the beach.

(2) Rentals. Although we do not rent our home, many do. Once the renters arrive to no waves or little kid tidal pools they will look elsewhere for a place to stay.

(3) Due to leaving the beach in Delaware for the day each and every day, we spend our lunch and dinner money in another area. This is bad for the local businesses.

(4) It is impossible to see the kids playing at the shore line or the breaking waves due to the mountain of sand piled on the beach. This is dangerous as I have already rescued our 4-year-old one time this summer.

My family and I are hoping for a nor’easter or hurricane to remove the sand and reestablish the sand bar so that we can go to our local beach and have fun again. I think the government should think twice before spending our tax dollars on unwanted temporary sand that hopefully will be gone by summer’s end.

The Faby family
Fenwick Island

Reader: system does not work in this case

As I put my seatbelt on, I am reminded of its function. Safety. While trying to adjust the shoulder strap off my jugular vein in my neck, I am angered that the government has mandated seatbelts for citizen safety. Anger. Government. Safety. All in one sentence. Hold that thought.

On July 27, 2005, I was widowed. That gives me the right to be angry. (It is part of a healthy grief process I am told.) Poignant that my spouse would be killed in the anniversary month of our nations’ independence. Government founded and then amended with the Bill of Rights. Remember the lessons about speedy and public trials and due process? Now our judicial process has run amuck to the point that you need to be a lawyer to write a law and then one to interpret it.

And still we can’t get it right. You see, our Constitution and Bill of Rights were written to keep us safe.

So now our legal due process had to choose if my husband was “manslaughtered” or simply “dead.” Jargon, you say?

Here’s another: “judgment” or “justice.” I don’t care if the man responsible sits in a cell or sits in a pew. I told the prosecutor that shortly after the accident. He heard that and decided that I am a widow due to a “misdemeanor.” He heard what I don’t care about and not what I do.

How dare my government elect to sit on the bench? (Nice pun.) The prosecutor could tell me details of the prescription drugs the man responsible was taking, but had not the slightest compulsion to determine if the man could see well enough to drive a vehicle on our roads (knowing that certain drugs can cause blurred vision).

The response to my concerns was that the criminal process would “mandate a review” of his driver’s license and it would be addressed then. Eleven months later, the man is still driving! Oh, my God! (Sorry if that three-letter word is profane to some.)

You see, the misdemeanor wasn’t enough to conduct a Division of Motor Vehicle review and the state didn’t see the importance of the investigation into whether or not this man has the ability to safely operate a vehicle. Regardless of your faith, be aware. Be afraid. Your seatbelt is the least of your worries. Your government has no clue how to keep you safe.

Deborah Townsend