Letter to the Editor

Two Sides to Every Story

To the Editor,

What happened to the premise that there are two sides to every story?  I wish your reporter did some more investigation regarding the Peace Park, aka: the Tot Lot, on Mt Vernon Street.  I am 85 years old and have lived here 65 years, raised my children here, and was a community activist all my life. Years ago my neighbors and I appealed to the Port Authority, who at the time owned the land at the corner of our street.

We got permission to turn the land into a Tot Lot.  We received no funding and ran cake sales and dances in the parish hall to raise the funds.  The men of the neighborhood built a wooden fence in the park to protect the children.  For years this was used as a Tot Lot for children to play.  Improvements were made from time to time as younger mothers got involved (chain linked fence, benches, trees, trash containers, etc.). This was not an abandoned piece of property. The current controversy is unfortunate, it came about when the people working on the lot were questioned by the residents, and became enraged. It seems to me when any type of construction takes place abutters are notified.   I have been notified several times of construction in my neighborhood, there was nothing to that effect in this case.   I am sure this ugly situation could have been avoided.  To name one person for destroying this park with no evidence, just hearsay, is terribly unfair.  I feel for the pain of the relatives of these people who tragically died.  Also for the many people who their actions have effected.  There are many innocent victims in this war on drugs.  Are we ready to name one more?

PS: If going forward the committee of the peace park want my help, I am ready to assist.

Mary Hayes


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