Tells of visit to Palisades Park veterans memorial

To the Editor:

In 1999, when Santa Monica dedicated a new veterans memorial atop Palisades Park, it was deliberately configured for shadows to line up annually at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. We anticipated that our community would gather at that moment each year to solemnly commemorate Veterans Day.

This Veterans Day, in the incipient drizzle of a gray Sunday, I was there, as I have been almost every year. Wreaths were laid and words were shared by Veterans for Peace, the only group that seemed to recall the memorial or its purpose to remember with honor those who have served us in war.

It is almost five years and 4,000 American military deaths into a war we did not foresee since, hopeful for peace, we de-dicated the site. How inspiring that the Veterans for Peace, weary from setting up their Arlington West memorial each day this holiday weekend [Saturday through Monday], took the time to climb the hill and mark the 11th day of the 11th month.

With the startling new statistic that fully a quarter of the homeless in our country are veterans, with veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan coming home dazed and wounded, with the possibility of a new war in Iran, is it the 11th hour for us all?

Kevin McKeown, Santa Monica City Council

Opposes rule that will expel small craft moored in slips next to Marina sea wall

To the Editor:

Once again, the folks at the Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors have displayed their bias against Marina del Rey boaters, the very taxpayers who provide them with their salaries.

The department has now decided to implement a flawed rule (The Specifications and Minimum Standards of Architectural Treatment and Construction for Marina del Rey, Section C) that will expel small craft that are moored in the slips next to the sea wall.

This is an absurd rule and its underlying logic is idiotic. The rule was implemented in case of an earthquake that might topple the sea wall onto the hundreds of small kayaks, dinghies and other small craft that serve as tenders to the large boats in the slips.

The logic is that the post-earthquake tumbling sea walls will injure boaters who are sleeping belowdecks. These are small craft ranging from ten to 16 feet. They don’t have any below-deck areas. There are no people sleeping on them.

It seems that the people at the department are trying to cut off their noses to spite their faces. If these slips are taken away from us, the Marina will suffer. If boaters lose their slips for their dinghies, the fairways will become clogged as hundreds of boaters tie their dinghies and small craft up behind their vessels.

Most boaters want to avail themselves of the various attractions around the Marina by using their dinghies to ferry themselves around the area. It is one of the main reasons they rent slips for their vessels in Marina del Rey. The Department of Beaches and Harbors will render hundreds of small boats valueless, since there is no place to moor them.

I applaud the department’s recent efforts to make the Marina come alive again with measures such as the summer water taxis and the new permits to restaurants in the works. The commercial interests in the area want to cater to the thousands of boaters in our Marina.

I appeal to the department to reconsider this self-damaging rule that has no logical purpose and serves only to hinder boaters’ enjoyment of our Marina.

On behalf of the hundreds of boaters who will be adversely affected, I thank you for your consideration.

Dr. John Thomas Terrence, Marina del Rey

He has driven in the area for over 30 years and knows there is no ‘Del Rey’

To the Editor:

Regarding “Del Rey residents hope new signs will help boost community’s identity and put it ‘on the map'” in the November 1st Argonaut:

I am surprised that you did not save the Del Rey community story for your April Fools Day edition.

I have driven around this area for over 30 years and I know that there is no such community called simply “Del Rey.”

Your article had me fooled until I read that Del Rey is located on the east side of Inglewood Boulevard, but then it says it is on the west side of Inglewood Boulevard, and it’s on the east side of Centinela Avenue, then notes it’s on the west side of Centinela Avenue?

I found the article humorous, but I hope you will inform your more gullible readers that the story and photo were just a hoax!

Gene Patrick, Los Angeles

From the Editor:

It’s no hoax. The fact that few people were aware of the existence of Del Rey is exactly why the residents of Del Rey were so excited to get their new signs.

Anyone who requires more proof that this community exists, besides the fact that The Argonaut has been reporting on it for years, can look on page 672 of The Thomas Guide. “DEL REY” appears proudly in capital letters near where the Marina Freeway crosses Culver Boulevard.

Del Rey will celebrate its 105th anniversary next year. Perhaps by then, enough people will have driven past the new signs proclaiming that one is entering the community of Del Rey that a few of them will actually remember where it is.

By the way, the letter writer informs us that his comments were written tongue-in-cheek, as he laughingly pondered the location of the mysterious community Del Rey.