I am writing in regards to the recent article about Classic Lifeguard pilot Owen Parks.
First let me say I am very proud of being from this small town and I believe we are a great community.
Second, I commend the Chronicle for representing this community well for the most part. However, it frustrates me greatly when people who are major contributors in this community are targeted for the purpose of dramatic effect.
Owen Parks is part of a business in town that saves, or significantly has an impact on, hundreds of people’s lives per year in our community and in the surrounding area. I’m trying to think when the last time they were represented and recognized for their contribution to this community in this newspaper. I don’t recall at all.
I know that other people in this community have had game violations in the last few months. I don’t recall any articles about them. I think it is rather unfair, and a bit lazy to pick the low-hanging fruit off of Associated Press news and call that journalism. (Editor’s note: The article was a press release from Colorado Parks and Wildlife.)
I know Owen Parks just enough to know he is an avid outdoorsman and respects and loves the resource. I do work with him on occasion and work with Classic as an organization frequently. They are a dedicated crew that risk their lives daily in flights that most all wouldn’t want to be any part of.
I’d be curious how many people in private aircraft would think of themselves as criminals for asking a pilot to take a turn around to enjoy viewing spotted wildlife from the air. Which is exactly how I understand this event occurred. Owen and the Classic Crew weren’t spotting animals with the intent of aiding in their harvest. He wasn’t herding them. He was viewing them.
I understand the violation. I can understand why he was issued a ticket. I can understand why he paid it and didn’t contest it in court. I don’t understand why we as a community spend so little time celebrating positive aspects of our community—like a lifesaving service like Classic Lifeguard—and then spend so much time pointing out others mistakes.
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