I want to set the record straight. The Delta County Independent misquoted me when they said that the courts had little concern for us (Appeals court upholds ruling on pesticide drift, page A3, Feb. 15). That is not true -- the courts always took into account our desire to protect our families from West Nile. It was Rosemary and Gordon who had no concern for us.
I will never know how Judge Herron came up with the ruling of contempt. Jim always followed the rulings of the courts. He kept good records, he measured the distances from the boundary lines and kept within those boundaries. No testing was done by the Department of Agriculture. We had evidence; Gordon and Rosemary had none! When it came to Jim's contempt for not following the instructions on the spray, they did not have the right instructions!
We did everything that was asked of us. We asked only one thing and Rosemary said no. We asked permission to spray over the hill in front of our house. This is a steep, rocky piece of land where their wastewater drains, causing a swamp. An ideal place for mosquitoes to live and breed. She wouldn't even let the mosquito district larvicide there. We would have been well over 150 feet from their house and yard. However, it was still their property.
They wouldn't even let our 10-year-old grandson and his friend play on their property. We got a letter from their lawyer saying, "We have been told, and we believe," that some of your things are on our property. This was still on that same steep hillside and just about as far away from their house as possible. Well we checked and sure enough, the boys had rolled some tires down the hill where they had made tunnels, forts and roads for playing with their trucks! Everything was put back on top of the hill and the boys never played there again.
Two fatal accidents occurred in Delta County within a two-day span last week.
Casey Gillenwater, 25, of Delta was killed the afternoon of Wednesday, Sept. 13, in a single-vehicle rollover on Highway 133 outside of Hotchkiss.