01 September 2001
Two Foolish Men Who Cost
By The Friday The 13th Anarchist
It has happened once again. Two irresponsible young fools decide to go on an adventure trip and one of them lost their life. In so doing, it sadly cost two 25-year-old heroes their own lives as well.
It happened on a sunny Sunday in Mc Connells Mill State Park, Butler County, Pennsylvania. The stupid, non-experienced, non-caring, and thoughtless kayaker's decided to take a run for it on the rain swollen, slippery rock creek that runs through one of the most beautiful but deadly gorges in the state. The gorge is, in fact, steep and dangerous and many a hiker has paid for a simple misstep with their life.
Experienced kayakers would not even attempt to run this creek when it is running this high, but with all the tragedies and all the warning signs that clearly state the dangers in this Park, the two fools took off anyway. You see, rules meant nothing to these two, plus experience--who needs it? After all, if something goes wrong, the Park Rangers and Fire Department will come to their rescue.
This is exactly what happened. One of the kayakers lost control, capsized, and ran under tree debris. Two local fire departments soon arrived and began the steep and difficult descent into the gorge. Two experienced rescue divers from Unionville Fire Department--both brand new fathers, an Assistant Chief, soon to be certified as a master diver, and a Fireman EMT, both long-time friends, put on wet suits, helmets, and life vests. They tied on their safety ropes and, like so many times before, put their lives on the line and proceeded to the kayak which had tipped over.
They had hoped that they were in time to find and rescue the foolish kayaker, but something went seriously wrong. The divers' lifeline snapped and they were swept down stream were they drowned. Their brother fire fighters, their families, and their communities were, of course, in a state of shock. These were the first line-of-duty deaths in the Department.
The one fool survived and now will live with the knowledge that he and his friend, whom he hardly knew, needlessly cost two good men their lives, if he even cares that is.
The Friday the 13th Anarchist is tired of these irresponsible fools causing pain and suffering and untold cost to the citizenry, all because they want to get their so-called high using extreme sports. It happens not only in State parks but in national parks as well. It is high time that when fools like this pull such a stunt and a rescuer is hurt or killed that the fool who caused it pays criminally and civilly.
In this latest case the surviving kayaker should be charged with two counts, felony manslaughter, and he should serve a long prison sentence. Until people are held to a higher standard and bad behavior is punished, not tolerated, will those who believe they are above the law begin to think differently.
|Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in today's commentary are that of the author and not necessarily that of Al Colombo or others who appear in this publication. Thank you.|
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Thank you. --Al Colombo
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