Questions still unanswered

Dear Editor:

This will be our third Thanksgiving since the tragic and preventable deaths of Caroline, Parker, Owen and Sophie Lofgren. It is hard to convey how important they were to their family and friends. They were so very kind and wry and fun and supportive and beautiful and smart. They were also generous and charitable. At an auction to support Owen and Sophie’s school, Caroline and Parker bid on a stay at a home in Aspen. They died in that Aspen home over Thanksgiving in 2008 from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Why was this home so lethal? Why was there no carbon monoxide detector in the home as required by law? Why did this home have a certificate of occupancy? Who is responsible for their deaths? Three years later, there are many unanswered questions. We had hoped that the criminal trials would give us some insight into what happened. We had hoped to hear the evidence that the grand jury heard, evidence that compelled them to issue indictments.

We want to understand the seeming cascade of failures that led to this tragedy. We want to understand how to prevent this from happening again. We want to educate people about carbon monoxide poisoning, and we want to influence legislation to make carbon monoxide detectors as ubiquitous as smoke detectors.

Please be sure that you and your loved ones have carbon monoxide detectors in your homes and that your heating systems are inspected prior to this winter’s heating season.

Christina Fedolfi, on behalf of the extended family of Caroline, Parker, Owen and Sophie Lofgren

Brunswick, Maine