Letters to the editor

  • Wednesday, June 12, 2019 5:30am
  • Opinion

Hickory should be renamed in honor of CWO Michael Kozlozski

The recent article in the Homer News mentioned that Lt. Cmdr. Leggett was temporarily relieved from command of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory. This a result of the Coast Guard crane fatality that Killed Chief Warrant Officer Kozlozski in addition to other concerns. According to Capt. Travise Rasmussen, author of the Major Incident Investigation Report (MIIR), it was stated that the unsafe operation of the Shuttlelift crane was the primary cause of the accident. Other factors such as unqualified personnel operating equipment, inadequate crew training, long-standing leadership deficiencies and complacency also contributed to this accident.

Farther review of the MIIR revealed some interesting information. It appears that unqualified personnel operating equipment, lack of crew training, leadership deficiencies and complacency was occurring long before Lt. Cmdr. Adam Leggett assumed command of the CGC Hickory,going back up to 18 months, perhaps longer. The most damaging information to come out of this tragic event revealed in the MIIR was the incident that happened on 17 Sept. 2017 ten months before the current CO took command of the Hickory.

This mishap involved a crane operated by a unqualified individual. Operator qualifications were not reviewed as part of the mishap analysis/investigation. The corrected action identified in the mishap report were briefed to command duty officers, crane operators, and crew, but were never documented. A former Commanding Officer (CO) did note ensure recommendations/corrective action to be implemented. It begs the question why nothing was done at this time?

Had an investigation been conducted perhaps some of these “deficiencies and complacency” Capt. Rasmussen mentioned in the Homer News article might have been corrected. Had Lt. Cmdr. Leggett been informed of this event (he stated that he was not aware of 2017 mishap involving the mishap crane), he too might also have been able to rectify some of the problems.

The U.S. Coast Guard needs to move beyond this tragic accident and get Lt. Cmdr. Adam Leggett and his crew back in action on the seas of Alaska.

Perhaps the CGC Hickory should be renamed the CGC Kozlozski in honor of CWO Michael Kozlozski.

Pete Velsko

Editor’s note: Mr. Velsko emailed this letter to the Homer News on May 26, but due to an editing error, was not published earlier.

Booster Club thankful to fund

The Homer High School Mariner Booster Club would like to recognize generous financial support from The David and Elizabeth Schroer Fund, a donor advised fund at the Homer Foundation. The gift assisted in our purpose to provide support for all organized sports and activities at Homer High School including fall, winter, and spring sports, drama, debate, and forensics. Operating under the Kenai Peninsula Student Activities Association (KPSAA) and the Alaska Schools Activities Association (ASAA), the Booster Club is a nonprofit corporation that helps fund team expenses including uniforms and travel, advocates participation in co-curricular activities, and promotes student development. Our students are well-rounded as they must maintain standards of eligibility in academic progress, personal conduct, and enrollment. Mariner teams and individuals have been recognized at the local, regional, and state level for their achievements thanks to the time and investment from parents, coaches, and the generous support of our community.

Kathy Beachy, President

HHS Mariner Booster Club

Re: ‘More to Venezuela Story’

Fox News gets a much higher grade for reporting than your letter. The issues Venezuela has are very complicated; suffice it to say the problems arose starting with Chavez, exacerbated by Maduro who refuses to step down after an election. In 2008, the Treasury Department imposed sanctions (asset freezing and prohibitions on transactions) on two individuals and two travel agencies in Venezuela for providing financial support to the radical group Hezbollah. In 2019 we increased sanctions on the state-owned oil company. The sanctions had nothing to do with the mess that has been Venezuela for at least two decades.

Comparing Venezuela to Canada or Norway is incomprehensible. Canada’s political climate is changing because folks are fed up with Trudeau’s far left agenda, and long wait times at healthcare facilities. Norway isn’t even in the same ballpark. Their economy is private-sector based on maximizing natural resources (try that in America) that allows them to fund their socialistic public-sector while emphasizing strong private property rights and individual liberty. Interesting Sweden wasn’t mentioned. Oh, right, they abandoned their socialistic governance because they were on the brink of collapse. They even went with private schools. How novel.

The differences between conservatism and socialism are significant; we like Liberty, rule of law, individual rights, limited government, facts. Socialism requires authoritarian governance, forced compliance. Humans are not causing climate change. Google Dr. Patrick Moore. Try https://realclimatescience.com. Promoting drastic, costly changes based off computer modeling from parameters entered by someone trying to prove a theory is nonsensical. Facts will enlighten the soul.

But this is what I don’t understand. If you are so convinced that socialism is awesome, instead of trying to destroy the only bastion of Liberty that draws migrants from all over the world, why not simply move to Venezuela/Canada/Norway?

Duane Christensen

Grace Ridge Brewery is generous in its support to Homer nonprofits

There is a business in Homer that donates tips collected at their establishment to non-profit organizations in Homer that apply to be on their schedule. The schedule runs for a month and said non-profit can hold events at the site for educational or a social gathering.

The Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park and The Kachemak Bay Water Trail Steering Committee would like to thank Don and Sherry Stead who support the Homer community in this generous way. Don has stated that this is just a pass through from a generous community having a good time at Grace Ridge Brewery.

I would point out that most business gratuities go to the staff.

Grace Ridge Brewery is a true friend to many organizations in Homer as they distributed close to $22,000 in 2018.

We would like to commend and thank Grace Ridge Brewery for letting us be part of their generous donation program.

Robert Archibald

Friends of Kachemak Bay State Park

Kachemak Bay Water Trail Steering Committee

Berklee bound and grateful

To Homer Emblem Club No.350, I would like to thank your organization for awarding me a scholarship, which I will use at Berklee School of Music in Boston. I have been so fortunate to grow and live in a community that supports the arts, and the people involved with them. Your support will help me get one step closer to my dream of becoming a professional musician one day.

With gratitude,

Lee Lowe

Grateful for scholarships

I have been extremely fortunate to grow up in a town as caring and generous as Homer. Recently I have been awarded the Alain and Daniel Rieser Scholarship in the amount of $3,000, yet another example of the outstanding generosity this community has to offer. This scholarship is extremely unique. Unlike the other scholarships the through the Homer Foundation, which aim their funds towards furthering one’s education at a college or university, the Alain and Daniel Rieser Schalrship opens up its scope towards students who want to explore opportunities through travel experiences. As a highschool senior who decided to take a gap year before attending college, this scholarship was one of the only available to me.

I am so exceedingly thankful to the Homer Foundation and the donors of the Tin Roof Fund for awarding me this scholarship. I intend to use the funds to help pay for my travel to South America where I will volunteer in Chile for two months before beginning my solo travel to further explore Chile and Peru. This $3,000 will allow me to pay for nearly all of the cost of the volunteer program which is a large portion of the total cost of the trip.

I would once again like to thank the Homer Foundation and the donors of the Tin Roof Fund, as well as the generosity of the community of Homer, for supporting individuals such as myself in all their endeavors, whether it be travel or college.

Brenna McCarron

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