Letters for Sunday, July 15, 2018

Nothing wrong with golf course funding

In her July 9 opinion piece, Eileen Kechloian criticizes the county for funding golf and states: “I have a problem with affordable golf being funded before affordable housing.”

The county provides funds for many recreational facilities and activities such as baseball fields, soccer fields, gymnasiums, neighborhood centers, etc. It also pays for lifeguards at public beaches. Does Ms. Kechloian have a problem with those recreational activities being funded by the county or is it just golf?

Ms. Kechloian states that she knows “many well-to-do men that golf at the county golf course” and implies that they should pay more than someone who will attest that they are not “well-to-do.” How about “well-to-do” women or is her proposed sliding scale just for men? No one should have to fill out a form stating that they “truly can’t afford golfing” in order to golf at a county facility.

I applaud the county for funding the Wailua Golf Course. It provides the island community with access to an excellent and affordable golf course, which is no less than we deserve!

Linda Estes, Koloa

Founder of rescue tube program sets the record straight

I am writing in regards to the article, “All Clear to Rescue” (July 10) in which the governor has signed legislation providing much-needed clarity waiving liability of Good Samaritans using rescue tubes in good faith throughout Hawaii.

Dr. Monty Downs kindly acknowledged me in the article as starting the program 11 years ago. However, it was not just that “the first rescue tube was hung on a shrub at Larsen’s Beach in 2007 by John Tyler,” and somehow we are where we are today (through the efforts of Kauai Lifeguard Association and Rotary).

What isn’t acknowledged is from 2007 through 2010, as a 17-year veteran lifeguard trainer at the time, I singlehandedly conceived and birthed the program and provided training on the tube use to the public, authored the signage accompanying the tubes, secured the acquisition of the first 50 tubes with a first donor, George Bail, and helped install many.

Fire Chief Westerman, Dr. Downs, Lt. Kalani Vierra, and several others were at the table as I reported its progress. Monty saw the program’s possibilities and was a thoughtful support for me. Kauai Rotary honored me in December 2010 with one of its Humanitarians of the Year awards, presented by Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr.

This all goes well beyond a nod of a guy “hanging the first tube on a bush” at a beach. But I appreciate the nod.

I fell ill in 2009 for several years and needed to pass the baton over to Dr. Downs by 2011 for version 2.0 and then it upgraded to version 3.0 with the Rotary program with Monty. But selectively, I was written out of the narrative.

I am touched to see what’s happened with the program, and the lives saved. In all fairness, I was the program’s “birth mother” and Dr. Downs and the Rotary its “adoptive parents.” In today’s culture of holding things up to the light for truth and healing, it just feels like it’s the right time to set the record pono.

I am so happy for all those mentioned and shown in the article for their hard work, and look forward to the program expanding nationally and even internationally someday, and with my company, also, I offer to help make that happen.

Jenn Tyler, formerly John Tyler, Kapaa

  1. gordon oswald July 15, 2018 7:13 am Reply

    Great letter Linda! Thank you!

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