Earlier this week WV Strong shared a few sections of a Charleston Gazette story about the conditions of the water systems in some of the more rural areas of our state. Some of the highlights were people having to drive almost an hour to fill jugs at a spring, and decaying town water systems left behind in company towns long abandoned by the coal companies who set them up.
Aubrey King, a Gazette reader wrote to the paper last week to thank them for drawing attention to the issues. We wanted to share her letter with our readers as a reminder that this issue goes further than statistics and headlines. This is a problem real West Virginians have been facing for decades, and it's important to keep those real people in mind when having this conversation.
From WV Gazette Mail:
Having grown up in Iaeger, in McDowell County, more than 50 years ago, I can attest that the conditions described in your series extend back for decades. My mother was always complaining about the taste, smell and appearance of our water.
Now it appears that the public water supply for McDowell (and elsewhere in the state) is worse than Third World countries. It suggests a failure of state and local political and business leadership and an apathetic citizenry over those many years.