Old Obici hospital deserved better

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 15, 2003

Editor, the News-Herald:

Driving past the old Obici site, I watched as the Medical Office building was torn down with no real attachment. Just recently in passing it jumped out at me, the School of Nursing had gone from a beautiful historical building of learning and opportunity, to an ugly pile of rubble.

This is a very sad time for this city. The mayor was recently praising the progress of the city, which is very promising, but he dealt a severe blow to the future of this changing city. The city completely ignored the Obici historical hospital site, while buying back the Obici House, going to great lengths to designate it historical for tax credits and have earmarked hundreds of thousands of dollars for renovations, all this land and no support for the equally historical hospital.

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The Historical Society has done a wonderful job with the Train Station, Prentis House, Gardener Store and College Court. All this time, dedication and effort have produced so much success. How wonderful to have this great group of people in our community. Their weakness lies in ignoring those sites that the city and the Obici Board have other plans for.

In symbolic protest of the Historical Society’s unorthodox practices, my wife and I will not renew our membership. This community really needs to develop beyond the clique mentality, which is a few people making all the decisions that influence the majority. The City Council, Historical Society and the Obici Board of Directors should be ashamed of their actions or inactions in this matter and the disrespect to Mr. Obici and his concerns and contributions to this community.

I can only hope the Obici Board of Directors has a plan to place a historical marker at the hospital site, but that is doubtful because they are so involved in making the most bang for the buck.

The hometown newspaper has not seen fit to take some last photos as a tribute to a dying historical site. Come on, what gives here?

This is indeed an injustice and, hopefully, this letter will provoke thoughts about the possibilities that have been destroyed by the few, affecting the many for generations.

Don Fowler,

LOSN Alumni