To the Editor,
I would like to respond to the letter written by Brenda Walsh, dated August 16. I have been associated with Trapper Mine for over 22 years. Trapper Mine is not some beast that sits on the hill south of Craig, counting its money. Trapper Mine is the employees. I am Trapper Mine, Joe Koonce was Trapper Mine, 150 people are Trapper Mine. When I read this letter, I felt sadness, anger and disgust. This was an insult to Joe and all the employees at Trapper. For your information, Brenda, every employee at Trapper was given the option of attending Joe's services, or working. I am sure the employees attending Joe's services weren't concerned about loosing a day's pay their only concern was paying their respects to Joe and giving their support to Beth and Joe's family.
There are a lot of people who cannot attend funerals, be it a family member or a close friend. Their way of dealing with a tragedy like this is to return to work as soon as possible and let the healing process begin. These people have a right to deal with their grief in their own way, and to suggest that Trapper Mine close them out and not consider their feelings is selfish and wrong.
If you really care about someone, your least concern would be your pocketbook. The majority of employees at Trapper Mine have been there longer than seven years, and Brenda, WE ARE FAMILY. You owe everyone at Trapper, and most of all Beth Koonce, an apology for insinuating that Trapper does not care. I worked with Joe for several years, and I will miss him, as will the rest of his Trapper family.