Letters to the
Editor....06.23.2011 3:30 pm
Dockside Hatteras is open for business after
fire destroys warehouse
I’m so sad to hear of the fire. My wife and I furnished our cottage
over the years through Joe and Meg and we saw our first Hatteras movie
there. Meg and Joe are wonderful folks. Please pass our
condolences along if you could.
Irene, I'm surprised you haven't had an article (and pictures too?) on
the Dockside Hatteras fire. I only saw a brief comment on one of the
boards, nothing on the "best little news page in the world."
Thank you for being our eyes and ears while we're not on the
island. We look forward, everyday, to seeing what's new on
the IFP. You are the greatest.
Note: Thank you for the compliment. You will find
an update on Dockside Hatteras on the Local News Page.
Warehouse burned but the store is open and doing business – and could
probably use some support from locals and visitors.)
This is my 36th year coming to Hatteras Island, and I'm never
disappointed. Some merchants actually call me by my first name,
especially at Teach’s Lair Marina.
Thanks to all the local people. We always enjoy your village very much.
Thanks again for a wonderful vacation, see you all in October!
classic Hatteras wedding with a surprise guest
Love this article. The photographer did a fantastic job, also!
The pictures are absolutely beautiful. It looks like such a
fun wedding, and the couple, family and friends all look so
happy. The deer just made it all the more perfect. May God
bless you with a long and happy life.
What a unique wedding! Best wishes to the happy couple.
Irene, Thanks so much for the wonderful story on Way &
Cena! It was great!
What an incredibly beautiful wedding! And the photographs are fantastic.
I hope he got some cake! So neat.
Irene, this is a fantastic story. Send to AP and UPI
Congratulations Cena and Wayland! Great picture of Doug in a suit, to
boot! But watch out—some enviro-nut is about to make the front porch a
teacher housing comes to Hatteras in time for upcoming school year
Good job on the quick fix. I know in this economy the reality that a
pay level consummate with what a teacher should be paid is not going to
happen, but it is a good effort to try and retain quality teachers for
Cape Hatteras Wounded Warrior Project welcomes its first visitors
What a great story!
This is a heartwarming example of how two people can change the
world. Great jobs all around! And thanks to Danny
for his service and to the entire Ruck family for their
Blubbering in my Cheerios…
This was such a wonderful story about the Wounded Warriors Project at
Cape Hatteras! I am Megan Ruck's grandmother. We
are all very proud of our Marine, Danny! This vacation was
just what they needed, and it was great to see the photos of all the
fun they had while there. Thanks to all who made this
vacation possible and their time there so special. I'm sure
they will be forever grateful for your kindnesses. Thank you!
My husband is a disabled veteran, USMC, retired 21 years. He is in a
power chair now due to ALS. It is not easy to find places on the beach
for handicapped persons. What you are doing is wonderful.
What a wonderful thing for folks to do for the wounded men and women
who have given so much to let us live the lives we live in the
USA. Bless them!
I just wanted to say thank you very much to all those who donated to
the Wounded Warrior Hatteras Vacation Fund. Our first family had an
absolutely wonderful time on Hatteras Island and is already planning to
come back. Most of all, I would like to thank them for fighting for my
freedom. Sometimes when we all get wrapped up in our everyday affairs,
we forget what is really important. This project has certainly taken
off in the right direction. Let's keeping it going until it's no longer
needed. Hatteras Island rocks...Thanks again!!
Point closes to off-road vehicles
We have been going to the Outer Banks for many years, and it is
disgusting that you would block off the beach for the stupid birds. I'm
not sure if we'll be going back to the Outer Banks or not. And another
thing—if the bridge is bad, fix it!
Guard prepares to put former base housing in Buxton on the market
The land should be given to the NPS. The buildings should be removed by
the U.S. Coast Guard. End of mess, end of story.
Here come catch shares: How NOAA and the Environmental Defense Fund
plan to destroy North Carolinas working watermen
NOAA, in its pursuit of catch shares and fishery closures not supported
by any valid data analysis, is ignoring the will of the people and
legislation passed by Congress.
They also practice intimidation with unjust and excessive fines to
enforce their ill-conceived regulations. I know of no other
government action over the last 55 years that should concern its
citizens more than NOAA's actions of the last two years. They
must be stopped.
Living: Learning to love thy beach neighbor
Lovely. Just completely lovely.
I hold and teach that all conflict is internal. A colleague sent me
here with that reminder. It is a wonderful illustration.
I absolutely LOVED this story! I recently visited Ocracoke
Island for the first time in my 52 years, and I fell in love with
it...all the way through the Outer Banks to the island! Thank
you for the chuckles and words of wisdom. Great story and
No fireworks for Hatteras or
Ocracoke, but there will be July 4 celebrations
We are always on the island for the 4th. We certainly understand the
reason for not having fireworks and fully agree with the decision not
to have them, although we will miss them. The venue sounds fine and we
will be looking forward to the planned activities. How about having a
fish fry or pig picking?
We will be spending a week in Buxton July 2 – July 9, 2011. Where will
the closest fireworks display be?
Note: There will be fireworks displays in Nags Head and
School graduates nine
This news is wonderful and thanks to all of you for letting us share in
your celebration. You will go far. Keep up the great work. We first
went to Ocracoke in the early ‘60s and our hearts have been there ever
since. So many friends over so many years. Travel safe and may God
Joyce E. Luff
West Lawn, Pa.
Congratulations to the Ocracoke class of 2011! An outstanding
achievement, and look at those scholarships!
on the mainland sends thick smoke over Hatteras Island
We are experiencing smoke and haze here in Ringle Heights, Georgetown,
S.C. We are about 45 miles south of the city of Conway, S.C.
I believe it is coming from the Hatteras area fire. How about an update
on the forecast?
out local veterinarians before you take your pet on vacation
It has been two years since my husband and I and our two beloved golden
retrievers, Hodges and Seaver, were on our annual vacation to Hatteras
Island in Avon. We had been going to the Outer Banks together for the
past four years, off-roading on Avon, Hatteras, and, most of all,
Ocracoke Island beaches. We spent our days fishing, swimming,
and relaxing on the beautiful beaches of the Outer Banks.
What a wonderful place to spend time with our two beautiful
goldens! We all truly loved it there!
On Tuesday, June 30, 2009, our 6-year-old golden retriever, Seaver,
woke us in our rental house at 11:30 p.m., crying over her 9-year-old
sister Golden Retriever, Hodges, who was in
distress. Within 30 minutes, our beloved Hodges began having
grand mal seizures, which continued for four straight hours.
As we were on vacation and did not know a veterinarian in the area, my
husband used the Yellow Pages and called the vet listed, only to be
told by the answering service that a veterinarian would return his
call. Almost 30 minutes later, the answering service called to inform
us that the veterinarian on call WOULD NOT see us and that we should
take our Hodges to the animal hospital in Chesapeake, Va., almost 3
hours away! Our Hodges did not have that kind of time to
wait, as she continued to violently seize. Not knowing what
else to do, my husband lifted our Hodges into the back of our truck
with me and, with our Seaver in the front seat, we began driving to
We drove for almost two hours off Hatteras Island, thinking we were
heading toward Chesapeake but getting lost on the way. Hodges was
getting worse, and we knew she would not make it three hours to
Virginia. In desperation, we drove to the Outer Banks
Hospital, hoping someone, anyone, would help us. My husband
went into the Emergency Room and explained that we had a very sick dog
that had been seizing now for over 2 ½ hours. The girl at the
desk and a local policeman there were very helpful, the girl telling us
that her vet was on call 24 hours and was only 15 minutes
away. She gave us their phone number. We called them and they
agreed to meet us at the Roanoke Island Animal Clinic in Manteo within
We frantically drove to the clinic, and, true to their word, Dr. Mary
Burkart and her husband, Dr. Mark Grossman, arrived within 15
minutes. Dr. Grossman jumped out of his car to lift Hodges
out of our truck, not even stopping to turn off his car’s engine or
close his front door. Mary and Mark immediately began
treating Hodges, trying to stop her seizures and doing various tests to
diagnose the cause. They worked on Hodges for over 1 ½ hours,
testing her, administering medications, comforting her and helping her
through the seizures. They even offered to take Hodges to
their own home with her IV and keep her in the bathtub to cool her down
for the rest of the night. We could not, however, let our
girl go somewhere without us. Ultimately, they informed us
that there was nothing else they could do and we made the dreadful but
humane decision to let our Hodges be at peace. After Hodges
passed, Dr. Burkart took the time to make sure that Seaver,
who witnessed everything in the Emergency Room, got to be next to
Hodges to understand that Hodges was gone. She explained that
it was a necessary closure for Seaver. We were amazed at her
Mary and Mark’s compassion, caring, and concern were
overwhelming. They did not know us – we were not their
clients, we were vacationers, strangers in the middle of the night who
brought a gravely ill golden retriever to them. They treated
her as if they had known her (and us) all of her life. They
treated her as if she were one of their own. They were
gentle, caring, loving, and so very professional both with our dogs and
with us in this very difficult time. They didn’t have to see
us. They didn’t refuse to see us as the on-call veterinarian
had. After Hodges passed, Mary gave us a clip of her hair and
made a paw print for us to take with us. We drove back to our
vacation house at 5:30 that morning with Seaver, not knowing what to do
or where to go. Seaver was in shock as were we.
I write this letter for many reasons. First, so that other
vacationers don’t make the same mistake we did in not being prepared
for an animal emergency while on vacation. Unfortunately, we
did not check out who or where the local veterinarian was before
arriving on Hatteras. Because of that, precious time was lost
in waiting for an “on-call” vet to see us – which, ultimately, he
refused to do. (We later were informed that we were the
fourth emergency that night that that particular “on-call” vet refused
to treat! What is the point of being “on-call” if you refuse
to treat patients?) Had we made preparations ahead of our
arrival, we may have been able to contact a veterinarian
sooner. It wouldn’t have saved our Hodges, but it certainly
would have made the ordeal a little less painful.
Second, if there IS an animal emergency, don’t be afraid to call
911. We did not call 911 because we thought it was “only an
animal emergency” and didn’t want to take time from a dispatcher who
might be helping someone really in need. Well, we too were
really in need. We were later informed that if we had called
911 and told them we had an animal emergency, they would have been able
to help direct us where to go or whom to call.
Third, to the veterinarian who was on call in the wee hours of the
morning of Wednesday, July 1, 2009 – the day our beloved Hodges died --
you missed an opportunity to care for and treat a beautiful, wonderful
family member of ours who so desperately needed your help on that
horrible night. You told us, who were vacationers and unfamiliar to the
area, to drive almost three hours away to an animal hospital in
Virginia when you could have seen us right there in the Hatteras
area. Why were you on-call if you wouldn’t see
patients? We were the fourth patients you refused to see that
night! You delayed our treatment and put our dog through
unnecessary pain because of your refusal. Shame on
you. You allowed a wonderful member of our family to suffer
much more than she should have. She deserved much better than
that. She deserved to be treated with dignity. And
she finally got it from Dr. Burkart and Dr. Grossman. You
should take a lesson from them!
Finally, to Dr. Mary Burkhart and Dr. Mark Grossman from the Roanoke
Island Animal Clinic—words cannot express the gratitude we feel for the
way you treated Hodges—and us—on that horrible night. You
cared for her as if she were your own. When she needed an IV
throughout the night, you offered to take her to your own home and keep
her in your bathtub so she could be cooled from the seizures because we
couldn’t bring her back to our rental with an IV. You took
care of Seaver, who was scared and confused about what was happening to
her sister. You made sure Seaver knew that Hodges was gone but that it
would be all right. You gave us a clip of Hodges’ hair and
her paw print. You talked to us about your own family
dogs. You grieved with us. You did everything you
could. You loved her for the few hours you knew
her. You helped Hodges, Seaver, and us through one of the
most difficult days of our lives, and we thank you from the bottom of
our hearts. We will always remember your kindness and
When we returned from the Outer Banks that July, 2009, our Seaver was
as depressed as we were about Hodges’ passing. We had many
discussions about getting a companion for Seaver to help ease her
grief. On January 20, 2010 my husband
surprised me for my January 23rd birthday with an 8-week old golden
retriever puppy named Grote (Yes, we are New York Met
fans…Gil Hodges, Tom Seaver, now Jerry Grote). She’s
wonderful, and Seaver just loved her! Seaver was a great big
sister, teaching Grote so many things in a few short weeks.
But, sadly, 6 ½ weeks later on Sunday, March 7, 2010 our 6-year-old
Seaver fell and dropped dead in our great room as she ran from the
kitchen to get a toy. The emergency vet thinks she had a
blood clot and died with no pain. We miss Seaver so very
much. It’s so very difficult to realize she is gone like our
Hodges. They were truly two peas in a pod and loved each
other very much. They were inseparable. We lost both of our
girls in eight months. Where once there were four of us,
there were now three. Our hearts and souls were gone. But then there’s
our new puppy who brings everything full circle. Life is very
unpredictable. We thought we had it all that June in 2009 on
the Outer Banks. Life has a funny way of reeling it all in.
As this summer begins with all of its hope and promise for fun,
relaxation, and family time, I beg you to take caution as you plan and
make your preparations for your vacation with your family and your
beloved family pet—no matter where you go. Please check out
the local veterinarian before you go on vacation- find out the name of
the veterinarian in the area, the animal hospital, who is on call, and
where they are located. It’s the one thing we didn’t put on
our list of preparations. I hope our beloved Hodges can
forgive us for that. We miss her and Seaver and love them
very much. And Grote, too!
New Letters to the
Editor....06.10.2011 2:40 pm
or Ocracoke, but there will be July 4 celebrations
To those who were anticipating or hoping for fireworks on Ocracoke this
year, and perhaps a bit more so to those who made this a condition of
coming to visit us, I confirm that our efforts to have a
were unsuccessful. We tried—oh, how we tried! The thought began last
October, the effort in January, and we abandoned hope when our
last entreaty was rejected in early May.
Sparing the reader most of the details, I
amplify Connie Leinbach's June 1 IFP article in one respect, one which
will come as no surprise to many readers -- the attitude of
the administration of the National Park Service. Several
requests to NPS for a Ramp 70 beach permit were rejected. (Recall that
in 2007 we were granted a beach launch at this site.) This was followed
by unsuccessful, although heroic, negotiations by our state senator,
who was given no reason for the rejection. Moving on to the U.S.
Congress, our several advocates were definitively
this time with the defense that, 1.) it would disturb nesting birds,
and 2.) there is a 10 p.m. beach access curfew. The fact that the first
defense is incorrect (this section is open to ORVs all year),
the second could easily have been observed, apparently seemed
Bloody but unbowed, we're beginning planning afresh for next
and will welcome suggestions for any strategies that
might help us succeed. Meanwhile, come see us anyway—we'll
Avon water rescues call attention to rip current threat to ocean
I am a great swimmer and have been swimming in the ocean all my
life. On Memorial Day, I was swept out by a rip current in
north of Ramp 34. It was so scary! My son helped to
out of the water. This had never happened to me, and I got
in the waves by the sandbar!
I am having young visitors this summer, and I plan to use the
lifeguarded beach in Buxton.
video is an excellent way for visitors in cottages and motels to learn
about rip currents. The video is available at the offices of the
companies and should be in each cottage or motel room. When I go to the
beach, the first thing I do (especially at outgoing tide) is look for
rip currents and tell or show the visitors around me what it looks
like. I was caught once in Virginia Beach, years ago, and luckily was
rescued by a surfing educator. Respect for Mother Ocean is the key.
disinvited to Big Rock Tournament, still appealing last years decision
This has got to one the most ridiculous things I have had the
displeasure of reading concerning Hatteras Island in my 45 years of
visiting the island! Forget the money, isn't this about fishing? After
all, we are not talking about a Pete Rose bet or a Don King fight fix.
It's fishing for heaven’s sake...let them fish! I have cancelled next
month’s trip to the island because I do not want my young, first-time
angler to witness such adolescent behavior. That’s too bad, because he
has never been saltwater fishing, and we planned to spend quite a bit
of money on the island (lodging, food, gas, bait, etc.).
My advice: take a step back and remember how you got to where you are
Thank you very little...
ferry toll at Hatteras Inlet
I can't begin to imagine the scope of our state's budget
I applaud the many hours our elected officials have spent in attempting
to correct this massive problem, and on most issues, I agree with
them...the state must reduce spending and increase revenues.
on the Hatteras/Ocracoke ferry toll issue, I must disagree. Our island
is water-locked, and we have no choice but to pay whatever amount is
required to travel on the Ocracoke/Hatteras ferry. Ocracoke citizens
are not wealthy people—our median income is below the state's average.
Most of us serve the tourism industry, and we only have seasonal
income. In the off season, unemployment is around 90 per cent.
Ocracoke Island is described as "The Pearl of the Outer
Visitors to our unique island come from all over America and the four
corners of the world to relax and enjoy themselves. It’s
unfortunate that most of our elected officials have never been here, or
even know where our island is located, yet they are taking profound
actions that will destroy us.
Tolling our public highway—the Hatteras Inlet ferry—will devastate the
economy of Ocracoke. Yes, the revenues will increase,
but with the plan to double the toll fee next year, our unique village,
a world class tourist destination as it is known today, will be
destroyed. North Carolina and the world will be poorer because of such
actions. And all for less than one-half of one per cent of
state’s budget. Sleep well tonight.
My family has been vacationing on Hatteras Island for 20 years, and we
always take at least one (if not more) ferry trip to Ocracoke. It has
always been surprising to us that there is not a toll! It's nice, of
course, but if there was some kind of charge, it would not deter us
from taking the ferry—at all! Of course, the toll could not be
unreasonable, but let's face it, tourists are there, and most of them
are spending money on all kinds of things (tons on rentals alone). Do
you really think that a charge for the ferry would really keep folks
from going to Ocracoke? I don't! How about $5 per car? The only way the
toll would deter people is if it lengthened the wait. There would have
to be a quick and efficient way of collecting the tolls. The waiting is
bad enough in the summer as it is.
If a toll keeps the ferries running more often, then I think most
tourists would go along with it.
As for the residents, they should be exempt altogether. I guess they
have a sticker or something, now, showing they are residents, right? I
don't believe they should ever pay a toll. That would be totally
As for increases on the other ferries, I guess everything goes up. But,
as always, folks can't handle too large of an increase at one time. And
as mentioned before, residents should be exempt.
Isn't there a way for this to work for all? If they do nothing, then we
all may suffer with limited service. If they go too far, it will ruin
it for everyone in the long run.
Common sense and compromise seems to be the way to go.
another round in keeping tolls off Hatteras Inlet ferry
We were so glad to read that there are not going to be tolls on the
Ocracoke/Hatteras ferry. We have been coming to the OBX for 27 years,
and this was going to be our last trip. Thank you.
I believe that true Ocracokers should have free passes, but everyone
else should pay. We as vacationers do not mind the price. In large
metropolitan areas, workers must ride and pay for toll roads and metro
service, but that is not reasonable in this small environment.
Is Bodie Island spit owned by the Park
Service or not
I have been visiting the Outer Banks for almost 30 years. It is (or
was) my favorite place to spend my free time—walking on the beach,
fishing, and just enjoying the people. I have seen changes by
government (National Park Service) that have caused the Outer Banks to
become a less and less desirable place to visit. They have
access to beaches and ramps. Now, how dumb is a bird that
nest within 250 feet of the surf line? Where they have a
you are not even allowed to walk along the surf line, according to a
government official that I spoke to on my last visit in May,
2011. Also the license fee to fish in the ocean is
the government does nothing for the ocean. In the week I
the Outer Banks, I had my cooler and my fishing license checked several
times. It seems that the government is trying to discourage
people from coming to the Outer Banks. In addition, they are
killing the local businesses and the way of life of the people that
live on the Outer Banks. I have many friends who also make
Outer Banks their vacation spot, and they are also becoming disgusted
with the direction the government is taking regarding the Outer
NOAA and partners continue the search for ships lost in World War II
off Cape Hatteras
In a letter from my father, he told of his ship being hit by a U-boat
and sunk off Hatteras. The Coast Guard in the village of Hatteras
responded, and he and four others were the only men to survive. He was
on a tanker convoy heading to Europe. One more reason I love the
village and its people.
Dr. Beach says
Hatteras is No. 5 for 2011
Maybe Dr. Beach did his survey on a day when the beach was filled with
ruts from SUVs. I'm not necessarily against fishermen using
but the ruts ARE quite ugly, including the ones left by the National
No. 5 is positive! When looking toward the future, it is
to be able to say that you are one of America's Top 10 Beaches (for
several years) than that you were RETIRED as No. 1. I'd rather appear
ON the list than be gone forever!
Temple will compete in first Jeopardy! Teachers Tournament
Twenty years down the road:
Contestant: I’ll take the category, “Far From the Maddening Crowd,”
Alex: This is the island where prize-winning teacher Charles
Hey Charlie, I waited for the smoke to clear from your win on Jeopardy!
I am a descendant of the Massachusetts Temple family, via Leofric
Temple and Lady Godiva Temple. I emailed your brother, Robert, the boat
captain, a few months ago. He said that you were the family historian.
young Hatteras waterman weighs in on the absurdity of catch shares
The attempt to control small business, fishing or otherwise, is one
aimed not at conservation, ecology, or the economy—it is aimed at
personal control of individuals who would operate small businesses.
These people are the backbone of our economy and our nation. They are
hard-working, independently-thinking citizens, not what our government
desires. The ability to drive business to large corporations with the
potential of securing organized labor voting is too much for this
Washington, D.C., group to pass up.
This catch shares nonsense brings cap-and-trade to mind—legalized
extortion for the benefit of a few at the expense of many. This is
world-government thinking and has nothing at all to do with fish or
N.C/Blue Bell, Pa.
Locals and visitors strut their stuff for feral cats
I hope the NPS doesn't trap these kittens or cats in their inhumane
Plastic bag ban will expand to all businesses on the Outer Banks on
My wife and I have been recycling for about 25 years. We live in
Harbinger, and I was wondering where we can take our packaging peanuts
to recycle. I hate just throwing them away. I try
as many as I can for packaging, but I usually end up with more than I
know what to do with. Any advice would be
Thanks, and God bless.
Learning to love thy beach neighbor
Ah, Joy, too funny!