Safety precautions needed

Visiting teenager has some ideas to prevent tragedies in local waters

I am 14 years old and staying with my grandma for the summer. I had recently heard about 12-year-old Ida Lynn Marie Holt-Scherer drowning and I felt as if something had to be done.

First, I want to give the Holt-Scherer family my condolences on their horrible loss, I am very sorry.

Second, I wish to address the other girl who was swept away as well, but was saved by a bystander. This girl also happens to be Ida’s 14-year-old cousin. I know how you feel. I am 14 as well and I know life can suck, and that day was the worst of them all.

I also know the you must feel as if it’s all your fault, but it is nowhere near true. You wanted to go back and find your cousin, but if that had happened you would have ended up the same way as your cousin. So be thankful that you get more time to live your life, and live it not just for yourself, but live it for your cousin. You must feel sad, angry, terrified, guilty, and it’s OK to feel that way, but don’t let these feelings ruin your life. I let fear rule my life, but I saved myself before it was too late.

Finally, I wish to address the matter of safety for locals and tourists. I may only be 14 and not a local, but when I heard the news that a girl had drowned, I started to think of all the possible preventions that could happen.

My first thought was to close the channel because that is where I thought she had drowned. Then I found out where it actually had occurred and I thought why not put something at the end of the channel that prevents people from going past that point but still lets water pass through, or put a barrier at the end of the sand bar, which was mentioned in the front-page article on Aug. 1  in the Penticton Western News.

I do understand that my suggestions as well as this letter may be ignored, as I am just some moronic teenager, but at least someone has heard my thoughts.

Kailey Gair


Vancouver (Penticton tourist)