Del Monte project has good potential

Regarding the proposed development of the Del Monte warehouse and the citizen concern about possible parking issues that could result:

I am a homeowner who lives near the Del Monte warehouse. For more than 20 years, nearby residents have endured the blighted eyesore of this beautiful but neglected building and site. Even worse, in recent years the building has been in use as a warehouse, which has brought huge tractor-trailer trucks to our small neighborhood streets. These trucks are too large to maneuver safely and spew diesel fumes and dirt into the air. The development of the Del Monte building may bring more cars to our neighborhood, but it will also bring people and life to a long-dead corner.

I agree that adequate parking for the project should be included in the plan. But I have concerns about overzealousness with regard to building large and unnecessary parking lots. Adjacent to the Del Monte building is a huge and extremely underused parking lot owned by the Wind River company. It has long troubled me that only a tiny fraction of it is ever used. Perhaps some kind of lease arrangement could be made between Wind River and the Del Monte developers to accommodate any overflow parking resulting from the development.

I am in favor of smart development and the reuse of existing structures. This project has the potential to improve our neighborhood.

Sue McIntire

Thanks to all in May who aided our shelter

Many thanks to those individuals and groups who have contributed to the Midway Shelter's Adopt-a-Bed program for abused women and their children. We thank the donors listed below who contributed from May 1-31. A number of the donors have contributed several times during this period.

Betty Sanderson, Karin Jensen, Barbara Anderson, Anonymous I, Isle City Institute #51 YLI, Virginia Krutilek, Anonymous II, Portia Albee, Maxine, Fred Lovell, Richard & Susan Osanna, Lois Pryor, Rich & Susan Sherratt, Mary Butler, Barbara Capon, Dick & Jean Spees, Guy Mayes & Nancy Issel-Mayes, John & Andrea Medulan, Virginia & David Miller, James Stehr, Cynthia & Lynn Withrow-Jones, Bridget Gulseth, Andrew & Meghan Thornton, Douglas J. Skinner, Kathleen Paget, Virginia Neuhoff, Louis Toepfer, Students of St. Joseph Notre Dame High School, Camilla Whyte, Al 7 Cheryl Filar, Harlyn Trayner, Dianne Richmond, Marian Williams, Barbara Gibson, Sam & Helen Sause, John & Maggie Maiers, Paula Patillo-Dupree, Sothera Sang, Christine M. Price for Robert Price, Richard & Dale Price for Robert Price, Susan Wainright, Ronald & Evelyn Coffman, Joyce & David Denyven, Mark Fraser, Alice Garvin, Suzanne Martin, Karen McCloud, Harlan & Ann Richter.

Donations may be sent to Alameda Homeless Network, P.O. Box 951, Alameda, CA 94501. For further information call 510-523-2377 or go to www.midwayshelter.org.

Ginny Krutilek

Never forget sacrifice Vietnam vets made

This last Memorial Day, I was proud to attend the beautiful tribute for the men and women who served so honorably in our armed forces. The service was at the Alameda Veterans Memorial Park on Island Drive.

Groups from each of the armed services took their place and proudly marched one after another up the center aisle to place a lovely wreath at the memorial.

I was so moved when the Vietnam veterans stood and marched down the aisle. Some were not as polished as many of the service representatives who had preceded them, but nonetheless, were very proud to pay tribute to the fallen men and women who had served with them. The one thing that stood out to me was that there was no wreath, not necessarily the most important symbol of respect, but its absence was notable. I wondered if it might have been an expense that couldn't be managed.

If that is so, I make a promise to these outstanding men and women that as long as I live in the city of Alameda or anywhere else, that there will be a wreath they will be able to place in memory of the fallen military persons of Vietnam.

This was the war of my generation. Those of us who were around in the 1960s and '70s know just how poorly these men and women were treated on returning home to America. I was a flight attendant with World Airways from 1968 through 1973. We took thousands of men back and forth to the war zones in Vietnam. When we flew out of Travis Air Force Base, there was total quiet. Some of those men had never been out of their counties, let alone their country. In many cases, they were asked to fight a war they didn't understand and, in most cases, were drafted.

The cheers on their return to the U.S. was deafening. Yet, as we all know, the protesters were lined up with signs, throwing things at these service people who were there to serve their country. Many of them still struggle, living in the streets, never feeling appreciated for their service.

Memorial Day was such a great day -- why bring it up? I want to remind everyone that many of these soldiers are out there, still fighting a war and may never recover. As we pay respect to all of the wonderful men and women on every Memorial Day, let us not forget the wonderful service people of the Vietnam War. I promise I won't.

Shirley Sutherland

Ducks as seen from a different viewpoint

In response to "Kind act to animal shows Island's virtue," May 23:

There I was, nesting comfortably in my ancestral home, surrounded by the glorious vegetation that has been my environment since my life first began.

Suddenly, Providence provided me a tasty little dish, thrust serendipitously into my hungry mouth. Mmm, duck foot -- something I had only heard of in tales. It was as tasty as I had imagined.

But just as suddenly, I was ripped from the comfort of my home, and some creature was sticking a sharp object into me, cracking my protective shell.

Oh, the pain as this instrument of torture sliced through my flesh. Then, like a flash, the duck foot was gone, and I was tossed aside, left to die, somewhere far from my home. Oh the pain. Oh the pity.

Mollusks get no respect.

Steven Archibald