Letters to the Editor
In my eyes, the eyes of a local high school student, the future of Crab Cove is bleak with the passage of Measure A.
The wellness center will serve as a regional facility for the county, opening the floodgates for tent cities to occupy Alameda, particularly Crab Cove. This wellness center will attract homeless individuals to Alameda who will then occupy and surround areas such as Crab Cove until admitted into the center or take advantage of the hospitality afforded by Alameda residents. During this period of time, tents, filth, garbage, hazards and disease will follow, accumulate and concentrate.
I have seen what has happened to Union Point Park in Oakland. It was once a nice park that everyone — children, families, couples, individuals, etc. — could enjoy safely, but now it has become a horrifying mess of tents and RVs littered and concentrated throughout the park, occupying the space to the brim with filth, trash, broken glass, needles and drugs.
The safe family-friendly Crab Cove, with its history of once being Neptune Beach, will descend to the unacceptable conditions that has befallen Union Point Park. Furthermore, having these deplorable conditions in such proximity to Paden Elementary School and Robert Crown Memorial Beach is absolutely inexcusable to the children, residents and visitors of Alameda.
The future is indeed bleak for Crab Cove. It will be a true shame to see what will become of this park.
On Sunday, May 5, Cosette Ratcliff will be retiring from her position as head librarian for adult services at Alameda Free Library. Her seven-year tenure there has enriched our lives immeasurably.
She initiated such programs as Libraries Outside (we regularly check out the backpacks for our grandchildren and have joined her on several hikes and service projects), Wonderfest, Pop-up Shakespeare plays on Sunday afternoons, TEDxAlameda (hands-down our favorite free event in the city to date), in addition to overseeing the art docent lectures and Adult Summer Reading Program.
We wish to publicly express our gratitude and extend to her our good wishes for a well-deserved happy retirement.
We would like to thank the good people of Alameda for their kindness and compassion around the death by suicide of our son Austin in February. We heard from classmates, his teachers from Paden and Alameda High School, neighbors and the parents of his many friends.
People sent food, cards and gifts, and although we no longer reside in Alameda, we felt embraced as part of the community once again.
We are planning a memorial at the Alameda skate park sometime next year, when Austin’s sisters return from their global travels; we’ll let friends know when that date is.
In the meantime, we welcome any stories or photos you may have about Austin and we can be reached via email at email@example.com. Photos of Austin especially are important to us. If any friends want to reach out and talk, please do — we grieve best together, not alone.
Although it isn’t the solution for everything, such as a lack of adequate mental health care in this country or a dearth of understanding, there is always a number you can call if you need help, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, 1-800-273-8255.
Again, we thank you, Alameda, for your love and support.