Hardly heroes | AspenTimes.com

Hardly heroes

Dear Editor:

I applaud Eric A. Simon (letters, Aug. 28) for publicly outing the disgrace that this once beautiful park has become. I live by that park, and residents and tourists who used to be able to enjoy that park have had to endure a daily assault on it by the infamous brown van people all summer long. Visit the Glory Hole Park anytime, and you’ll witness them drinking, sleeping, bathing, doing their laundry and urinating right there in the park. Every day, all day, sunrise to sunset. It’s disgusting. Eric is right ” it is time the city adopted an ordinance that would put an end to this.

Furthermore, as a victim of drunken driving (my wife’s brother was killed by a drunken driver) and a concerned parent, I find the decision to reward known drunks with a new vehicle outrageous! Getting Michael and Jane some serious help is a necessary and noble cause for sure, and I commend Vince Savage for trying to help them. But to house two aging citizens with physical and mental health problems and severe substance abuse issues in a van shouldn’t even be an option, and does nothing toward curing this neighborhood nuisance. A new van encourages and enables the status quo (drinking, urinating in the park, etc.), and endangers everyone in the vicinity of that van once the key is turned. Do we really want to give the town drunks a new van to drive around in? I wonder what MADD would think of this.

Virtually all of my neighbors in the Glory Hole Park area are fed up and totally disgusted with this, and would speak up if not for fear of being vilified in the press, which for some mysterious reason tends to paint Michael and Jane in a romantic, heroic light. Well, they are not my heroes. My 2-year-old son is my hero; and I’d welcome some help from city officials in trying to protect him and restore the Glory Hole Park and its surrounding neighborhood to what it used to be: one that is fit to raise a family in.

Mark Elias

Aspen