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A touching story from the Gulf Coast cleanup

Post by Jeff Mayor / The News Tribune on Aug. 6, 2010 at 11:39 am |
August 6, 2010 11:39 am

I found this story posted today on the National Park Service’s news web site. I thought it might make for a good read as we head into the weekend.

A cleanup crew at Gulf Island National Seashore found a moving letter in a bottle on the shore at Horn Island in mid-July. The group decided to send a letter and a t-shirt with all their names on it to the author in Wales.

On July 15, a bottle washed up on Horn Island, an island on the Mississippi side of Gulf Island National Seashore. An oil spill cleanup crew and National Park Service resource advisors Kelly J. Moore and Patricia Kraft found the bottle and opened it to find five letters written by the family of James Adams, a British soldier who died on Sept. 27, 2009, while serving in Afghanistan.

Moore and her colleagues read aloud the letters that were addressed to Adams and dated May 1. They were writteb by his mother Sarah, sister Emma, brother Josh, and friends Maureen and Tom.

Sarah also wrote another letter to “whoever finds this bottle” urging them “to try to make a difference, and stop anymore pain.”

The message made a deep impression on the cleanup crew. They signed a t-shirt and took a group photo to send to Sarah in Wales. Moore lso wrote a letter to the family expressing the responders’ sympathy for James’s loss and gratitude for his service.

“As Sarah encourages in her letter, we all have the right and the responsibility to help make this world a better place,” Moore wrote. “We have the opportunity to make a difference, however slight it may be.

“There are many men and women who are doing their part to clean up this disaster that has blanketed the Gulf in oil. These men and women are making a difference – one tar ball at a time. It is a slow process, but an honorable one.

“Finding that bottle is something we will never forget. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us all and for reminding us that everyone has the power to make a positive impact in some way.”

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