My husband and I have lived in La Plata County for 20 years. For the past six of those, we have lived approximately 50 yards from the train track in the North Valley, so we happily hear and see the train pass by several times a day.
The Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is one of the reasons we originally moved to this area. We are very discouraged by the negative comments that often are published in the Durango Herald about the train.
It seems to be part of the human condition that individuals are more willing to complain than to make positive and constructive statements. This definitely seems to be the case with perceptions about the train. I speak specifically about two recent letters to the editor.
One of these individuals didn’t even know that the train blows a whistle, not a horn! The second one was written by someone who has consistently spoken out against the train, in part because of a perceived right-of-way issue.
We have been involved over the years with benefit activities supported by Al Harper and railroad personnel. I suggest that those commenting about the “selfishness” of the train actually gather data regarding what Mr. Harper and his railroad do to benefit the Durango area before making reckless comments.
Yes, the 411 Fire was certainly terrible, but Mr. Harper has made and continues to make amends. He and the D&SNG, in our opinion, do not “ride roughshod” over our town, but rather consistently contribute to its prosperity.
Suzanne M. Parker