• Let’s not forget Smith’s contribution
    April 25,2014
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    “Who steals my purse steals trash. But he who steals my good name from me takes everything from me and has nothing for himself.” (Shakespeare)

    One day last year, my mayor and Mr. Bishop and some others crucified my dear friend, Michael Smith, the creator of Pine Hill Park. They plunged a knife into his dear heart when they said he could never go back into his beautiful park. This was Michael’s “child.” If there had never been a wonderful young man named Michael there never would have been a Pine Hill Park.

    Many years ago, this was Michael’s dream, and he started carving little paths in the forest long before anyone came to join him.

    His article in the Rutland Herald on April 14 broke my heart, and I am furious with all those who wounded him so severely after all he has done for Rutland.

    The full page story (page A11) in the Herald on April 21 praising Pine Hill Park — and not one word about the young man who made it possible. How could they do that? I do not know who reporters Haley and Shramek are, but if they took five minutes to look into the Herald archives, they would find lots of articles and pictures about Pine Hill Park, and always acknowledging Michael’s contributions and hard work.

    For years, Michael emailed me pictures of the bridges he was going to build and new ideas he had for future projects. One was a copy of an ancient Chinese bridge. He loved his forest and working on it. I told him there were not many people who would leave behind them such a peaceful woodland garden. He made it with God’s help.

    Only Mike and my Lord know how many long hours, in all kinds of weather, getting callouses and blisters and splinters and aching muscles to make his dream come true.

    Dear Michael, wherever you are tonight in this big wide world, I pray with all my heart our Lord will stay close to you and keep you safe and bring you happiness and peace. Only God knows how much you have sacrificed to give Pine Hill Park to the folks of Rutland, and we will not forget you.


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