Letter to the Editor

Could accident have been prevented?

Sunday, January 8, 2017

To the editor::

All my condolences to the Stewart family for the loss of the children and the mother of those in the tragic fire. My family has donated and prayed for your family. As a father of five I couldn’t imagine losing my wife or children.

All the pain and emotionally aside, I was wondering where the state or county agencies were? Child Protective Services and local law enforcement are quick to survey the home of middle-class families that have in-home substance abuse problems or anonymous reports of in-home arguments. Where was Child Protective Services, law enforcement and our community services at when a family of 11 (mostly children) were living in a home not fit for that many with inadequate heat and exit material. All of this within one block of the county sheriff’s department, courthouse and other county offices. I drove by the home a handful of times and noticed the amount of residents only because one of my family members lives very close. I know if I have noticed the unsafe structure and conditions authority figures in the community have to.

Once again my heart and prayers go out to the family. I can’t help but feel that our community officials and agencies could have prevented the accident.

Troy Johnson, Brazil