Investigators seek answers

No word yet on what caused deadly explosion in forest

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Charred ground, and a pool of oil stand where an oil storage tank used to. Officials said that it appears that two South Routt County teenagers were jumping on top of one of the tanks (laying on its side in the field) when it exploded. Both teens were killed in the explosion.

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The remains of an oil storage tank lay in a field approximately 150 feet from where an explosion took place Saturday night. Two teens from South Routt County were on top of the tank and were killed in the explosion, investigators say.

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Beer cans and bottles littered the scene of an oil storage container explosion that killed two South Routt teenagers Saturday night. Officials said that Christopher King Fuller, 19, and Samuel Hedemark, 17, were killed in the explosion. Authorities say Hedemark and Fuller were jumping on top of the tank when it exploded.

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A pool of oil sits where an oil storage tank used to at a well site near Chapman Reservoir outside of Phippsburg on Monday morning. South Routt teenagers Sam Hedemark and Christopher King Fuller were killed Saturday night after the tank exploded while they were jumping on top of it.

— A night of drinking in the woods turned deadly for two South Routt teenagers Saturday when an oil storage tank exploded in the Routt National Forest.

Sam Hedemark, 17, of Phippsburg and Christopher King Fuller, 19, of Yampa were among a group of about 20 teens and young adults partying near Chapman Reservoir in northeast Rio Blanco County. The area is about 15 miles southwest of Phippsburg.

Investigators say Hedemark and Fuller were jumping on top of a 20-foot-tall oil storage tank when it exploded at about 10:15 p.m. Saturday. The bodies of the two teens were found more than 400 feet away from the blast site, investigators said.

The cause of the explosion still is unknown.

Rio Blanco County Undersheriff Michael Joos said investigators are considering several possibilities for the blast at a well site off Forest Service Road 949.

"We don't know what the source is," Joos said Monday afternoon. "It could have come from a lighter, but there was also a campfire down at the site. It could have been static electricity. All we know is that it ignited and that we don't know the ignition source at this point."

Joos said witness statements indicate that Hedemark and Fuller were jumping up and down on the oil storage tank prior to the explosion. The tank, which was half-full with about 160 barrels of oil, had a release valve on the top that allows vapors to escape when the pressure builds up. Joos said when Hedemark and Fuller jumped on the tank, it could have increased the amount of vapor escaping the release valve.

At some point, those vapors ignited. Joos said one of the teens was found with cigarettes, marijuana and a lighter.

"Initially, when it was called in as an explosion, we didn't really know what we were looking at," Joos said. "This wasn't an oil field accident with workers where something went wrong."

'Fire everywhere'

Jessica Almeida, 17, said she was at the party when the accident happened.

"A bunch of people were jumping on it," Almeida said. Everyone except Hedemark and Fuller then climbed down from the tank. She said her back was turned when it exploded.

"It was just like fire everywhere," Almeida said. "We thought there were a lot more people (hurt)."

Almeida said most of the people at the party were drinking. The group included minors and adults. After the blast, she said many of the partygoers jumped in their cars to get the cars away from the flames. Once everyone regrouped, some of them drove toward town to call for help because there is little or no cell phone reception in the area.

It was Sunday morning before Almeida knew Hedemark and Fuller were dead.

"It's very upsetting," said the Soroco High School student, who will be a senior in the fall.

Empty beer cans and bottles littered the explosion site Monday. Rio Blanco County Coroner Randall Cochran said Hedemark and Fuller had blood-alcohol levels higher than the 0.08 percent legal limit for driving. Cochran said Hedemark's blood-alcohol was 0.112 percent and Fuller's was 0.161. Both also had traces of marijuana in their systems.

Hedemark died of blunt force trauma to the head and chest, and Fuller died of blunt force trauma to the chest and abdomen, Cochran said Monday night. Cochran said he believes the teens died as a result of the initial blast.

The scene

Another teen who said he was at the party Saturday night returned to the site of the tragedy Monday to see the damage for himself.

"I had just met Chris and Sam that night," said the teen, who would not give his name. "But I was told this is what people do - come out here to have parties. Everyone said they had been here before."

Joos and Almeida confirmed that the spot is popular for South Routt teens.

The unidentified teen said he left the party at about 9 p.m. to drive to Steamboat Springs to pick up a friend to bring back to the party.

"While I was in the car coming back, I got a call at 10:15 from a friend at the party who said it blew up," he said. "We came back today just to see what it all looked like."

In a clearing just off the Forest Service Road Monday, the oil storage tank rested on its side, about 150 feet from where it exploded. The ladder that led to the top of the tank sat in a tangled mess next to the blast crater.

A second tank stood nearby, having withstood the blast. The ground surrounding the area is charred in a 100-foot diameter and is sticky with oil.

Other remnants of Saturday's party included the ashes of a bonfire that burned about 30 feet from the oil tanks. More empty beer cans sat in a nearby barrel.

A deep pool of oil collected in the crater where the exploded tank previously stood. Valves, hoses and metal were strewn across the area, and a trail of burning oil trickled down a narrow trail leading away from the site, staining the ground black.

Joos said bullet casings were found at the site, but there were no bullet holes found in the oil tank.

No word on charges

The Rio Blanco Sheriff's Office is the lead agency investigating the explosion. CBI agents are assisting with the interviews of teenagers present during the accident.

"What we are thinking is that in the interviews more kids' names are going to come out, and then more interviews will come out of that," Joos said.

There has been no decision on whether to file criminal charges, Joos said. Officials with the 9th Judicial District Attorney's Office toured the accident site Monday and won't decide on charges until the investigation is complete.

The U.S. Forest Service will be in charge of site cleanup and gauging the environmental impact of the accident.

Comments

Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 5 months ago

Good for you, Hash. I'm sure the familiies feel so much better now.

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Jason Miller 7 years, 5 months ago

What are you go to do.You will never stop kids from drinking and this will happen again.This is what happens when you mix booze,drugs and stupidy.I'm surprised im still alive after all the bonehead things i've done.

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bikegirl 7 years, 5 months ago

Once again,people lack compassion,how about a prayer for the families and how about we all take responsibility for helping our youth make better choices,remember,teenagers do take risks and do stupid things.our kids need to have adults in our communities[other than just thier parents}that they can go to for guidance and acceptance,even when they screw up.I often told my teens be smart be safe,and call me if you are in a bad situation.Most of the time they did,but not always.To Hash-Garret be the change,or be quiet.

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honeystinger1 7 years, 5 months ago

I was present with both of these "adults" at the party and I have shared all information with authorities. Rio Blanco is taking care of the situation. Please leave it in their hands to judge wether or not any charges need to be filed or if either of those adults acted inapproriatly. I can't say it enough, you werent there. A lot of things are being said purely from opinion and rumor and it's hurting a lot of people. I know you have a right to your opinion, but it still hurts.

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

bikegirl:

Compassion and acknowledgement of exceptionally poor decision making are not mutually exclusive. If not for their bad judgment, their families would not be mourning today that's a fact.

As I mentioned in another thread yesterday: I lost a good friend to AIDS when I was in my 20s. I was devastated by the loss, and simultaneously furious that he had been STUPID enough to stick a needle in his arm. My anguish & compassion for everyone Tony left behind had nothing to do with who was ultimately culpable, nor did render my anger and resentment inappropriate.

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Bike Girl:

While compassion can not discriminate, the mother of one of the boys had a history of her kids getting in trouble. Where was that good parenting and motherly advice when the other brother had a MVA a few months ago and had to be flown out?

If you asked most parents in this area, we would agree that it is sad to lose a young kid. But when a pattern develops with teens and drinking, one can't help but sit back and wonder why certain kids continue to get in trouble.

Not too long ago a group of "concerned" parents held a pink balloon rally pledging to make a difference with the teens of this community. From the recent police blotter/arrest records of multiple DUI, and MIP's, it appears that the good intentions and hot air helium has all but faded out of the balloons.

It sounds like you need some crisis mgmt support to handle what appears to be an understanding of the greater issue at hand .

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Soroco_Alum 7 years, 5 months ago

First and foremost, My heart goes out to the friends and families of these kids. May you have the strength to endure this great loss.

The problem does not lie in the hands of these "irresponsible teens" These teens are purely products of their environment. Just years ago, I too found myself in these same sort of alcohol related tragedies. I have lost many very close friends to circumstances similar to these. I also have been an attendee at many high school parties in my years both in and around this very location. I am not sure how many teenagers this community needs to loose before this problem is taking seriously. I am confused and hurt by every tragedy that has happened in this community, however not surprised. This problem has been going on for years and every time it does, we have all of these "concerned adults" who want to point fingers and talk about how "stupid" these teens are. I believe the real stupidity lies within the adults of this community. Years and Years, Tragedy after Tragedy, and still the same responses and same results. This youth does not need to be told they are dumb, they need a community that supports them. All of them... not just the honor roll students or the athletes. It is simply unbelievable that in a community so small there are still children that "slip through the cracks". This problem does not lie in the adults who are contributing to minors, it lies in the adults and mentors that don't take time to reach out to this youth. These kids will continue to party every weekend for years to come until someone, somewhere, presents them with alternative activities. If this youth was more optimistic about their futures and opportunities presented to them, they would be much less willing to make decisions that would in turn effect these aspirations. If these children cared about life and their future, they would not need to be getting to intoxicated and partying in the woods. However, instead of giving this youth positive reinforcement and encouragement, they are called stupid and looked down upon.

Growing up in South Routt these days is not what it use to be. This youth, is surrounded by judgments, surrounded by nonsupporting authority figures, and don't have anything to do. Teenagers want a place to be with their friends, they need to be given opportunities, and shown a life that exists beyond the Rocky Mountains. This youth is forced to grow up in an environment where they are cast out. Don't you see these parties are the only place they (we) feel (felt) like they (we) belong. So, until this insanity of repetitive responses of "supposed stupidity and blame" stops, and ever single person of the community takes the responsibility to understand this youth, these tragedies will continue to happen. So, before all of you cast judgment and point the finger... take a minute and think about what you could have done or can do to stop this on-going tragedy.

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katrinkakelly 7 years, 5 months ago

SOUTH ROUTT TEEN CENTER OR COMMUNITY CENTER WITH A POOL, TENNIS COURTS, WEIGHT ROOM, CLIMBING WALL, SNACK BAR, RAQUETBALL, ETC, ETC, what a concept!

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

katrinkakelly:

Steamboat is one of the recreational meccas of the universe. There's plenty to do here all year round. Anyone who can't find something engaging to do is deliberately stupid and lazy.

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lindaanddan 7 years, 5 months ago

I know both of theese family's are devestated ,I think we need to help keep theese family's strong , My thought's r are with you Doug,Kay & kathy.If you need anything at all please call. To you other kids that wer'e there I'm sure you have learned a big lesson here,hope you will remember it and use better judge ment in future.I know party's with teens have gone on forever.PLEASE BE SAFE!!! Sam & Chris R.I.P. Love & Light

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Soroco_Alum 7 years, 5 months ago

Well, there you go with the name calling and accusing... the things that have been done to date seem to be working... pink balloons... wow and let me guess... (your kids don't get involved in these tragedies right) KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK~ YOU HAVE DONE YOUR PART... THIS COMMUNITY WILL JUST KEEP LOOSING CHILDREN'S LIVES... So all your hard work must be working. I'll keep my comments to myself looks like you guys have it under control!

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

im so glad to hear most of u were not teens at one time........ most of u speak as if you were the perfict child and never done any wrong, GOD dont all parents wish they had kids like YOU..........haa haa haa, one of these boys is family to me and yes it hurts to know they had alcohol and drugs, but you people that have no heart or remorce for the familys of these 2 boys are a far worse drug than any in the world. Your attitudes, comments and judging is what makes this world the way it is, this is so sick, i understand people have the right to there opinions, but most that are here, are conceved from you having nothing elese to do other then think of more hidius things to say about some one, and im sure theres some of you that dont even know the boys but yet your quik to judge. How would your family feel if you died today and all people had to say about you is that you were stupid, dumb, a druggy, so on, so on so on.........i think o morn more nowing the fact that there are people like you at there, then the loss of these boys.....THATS PRETTY SAD!!!!!!

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

and another thing you all are so focused on underage drinking.... what about the adults that drink, i think they are more harmful to us then the teens. Look at all the adult drunk drivers that have taken our childrens lives, WHAT ABOUT THEM???????? My cousin was killed 15 years ago by a man that was drunk at 9:00 in the morning, yes morning. i have seen more teens killed by adult drunk drivers then i have by teens underage drinking, what does that tell you, maybe we should put a leash on you adults instead of these kids, NOW THAT MIGHT WORK!!!!!!

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

Soroco_Alum:

You talk the talk. Do you walk the walk? What are YOU doing to "stop this on-going tragedy"? What are YOU doing to provide "alternate activities"? And as I've already posted, anyone who can't find an activity in Steamboat is the incarnation of indolence.

I have no problem with finger pointing, and refuse to blame a community for an individual's failure to assume personal responsibility for his actions. The loss of the two young men is tragic and an unmitigated waste. But they alone are responsible for the choices they made.

cvajks03: That's one of the most childishly incoherent contributions I've seen here. Have a good time at your next GED reunion.

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bikegirl 7 years, 5 months ago

to JazzSlave I agree with you ,yes these teens had poor judgement ,And I too lost a brother to aids 3years ago,my brother was a herion addict whose selfish and self destructive behavior ripped my parents hearts and caused incredible hurt in our family.however,my folks tried,did everything they could to help,these were my brothers demons.I guess time and forgiveness are the healers.

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12345abcde 7 years, 5 months ago

JazzSlave: Are you really that insensitive that you have no compassion at all for two teens that are now dead. You don't even think about how devestated the families of these two boys are, not to mention their friends. Do you not understand how your words on this affect those who knew sam and chris? Everyone makes mistakes and some are lucky enough to live through them. Don't condemn them for being teenagers. Can you honestly say that you never made any mistakes that COULD have taken your life but DIDN'T? I can't believe that even after you saw one of the boys' family members posted you continue to degrade not only the boys but now their family members as well? How would you feel if you were close friends with these boys and you came to read the article and found someone like you who was posting heinous comments when all the families need right now is support.

I went to school with both of these boys and I want it to be known that even though sometimes they made unwise decisions they were both very nice. I would hope that they could be remembered for who they were in life, rather than how they died.

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123now 7 years, 5 months ago

I don't even need to put my comments in here. But I will say this, some of you that are so quick to judge, you arn't the perfect little angel's that you think you are. Everyone has a mind of their own. My whole family is from Oak Creek. I was born and raised there for over 30 some years. We use to camp right across that road up in those trees where this happened. We use to party out there as teenagers too and we are so lucky that nothing ever happened to us. We done crazy things too at times but it was our decision.
My heart goes out to the familes of these two young boys. I just can't imagin what they are going through or what they must be feeling.

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corduroy 7 years, 5 months ago

at this point its rude and heartless to just try to point fingers and blame someone. It's a tragedy, plain and simple. My heart goes out to the families and friends of these two young adults

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kathy 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajkso3 Do not allow these comments to upset you. Listen people say what people say and sometimes they say it in the wrong heartless way and sometimes take up things that should be taken up at a later time. As long as you know in your heart about these boys then that is all that matteres. When bad things happen some people what to reach out and try to hang the nearest person and grab on to any one or thing to blame. Anger and blaming is a emotions that is much easier to deal with then the emotions of saddness and pain. Some people are scared to feel the emotions in the heart it is harder to deal with. Those are the ones that grab on and blame every one and every thing. So understand that. We have all made mistakes and will make many more. The mistakes we made from yesterday makes us who we are today. Grow and learn from others mistakes and that is all we can do. We all learn in different ways and some times it takes more for others. Pulling togeather and down the road and addressing some of the problems. We make change with one person at a time. Start with you today and do not feed into someone else's mean heart. You have your pain to endure and that is so much. Please don't allow these people to take you futher down then you are. I think you deserve better then that. Let them deal with their own emotions and you deal with yours. God is with you he will help you through this just open up you thoughts and heart to him. Don't waste your time explaining to non-opened minded heartless people it is a waste of your time.

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Soroco_Alum 7 years, 5 months ago

For clarity: I never was judging these kids, who would I be to do that. I was these kids. I have lost five friends to alcohol related incidents and have had my share of underage drinking tickets and have almost lost my own life to decisions made while under the influence. I am in no way judging these children or trying to disrespect the families in any way. I to know these kids from school. I grew up with one of the teenager's older brother. I have respect for these families and can not imagine what they must be going through. My comments were motivated by this compassion and sympathy that I have for them as well as the family and friends of the ones I have lost. That is why I state these things today. Because after years and years of children dieing I feel something must be done. I have not lived in South Routt for over 5 years and still continue to hurt for these children. I was these children, and now being a responsible adult, I feel that this problem needs to be addressed. Luckily I got out of that community before it was too late. I would love to be involved in this community... but have not been back but one time since I left. This needs to be taken into the hands of all that are still part of the community.

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honeystinger1 7 years, 5 months ago

123now: When I first moved to this area I made some friends and we used to always go up there to party and drink. The funny thing is that we always had a D.D with us just like we did last Saturday night. Actually there was two adults that werent drinking so that they could drive people home. We were making sure that we could have a good time w/o worrying about who would drive. And to think that was the least of our worries. It just goes to show that anything can happen at any time. It's just so strange that people go up there all the time to party, but this night was so very different. I want to say thank you to everyone for all of your support and concern. To those who only have bad things to say: You have a right to your opinion eventhough it's heartless.

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bikegirl 7 years, 5 months ago

dundalk -as a steamboat parent of 3,2 now in their twenties I believe I have a good understanding of the greater issue of the alchohol and drug problems in our communities.I am a teacher.a parent and a mentor.I am very aware of the families who struggle with their kids and the families who choose not to deal ,I am also very aware of the parents who make poor decisions concerning their kids.I am aware and involved,and yes,I too wonder why the same kids keep getting in the same trouble,I don't believe I need any crisis management, I do think that if we all reach out a bit more and keep connected to our own kids and their friends it can help them stay healthy.However,we cannot keep blaming and judging,we need to be positve role models for our kids and help those who don't have any positives in their lives.We also need to hold kids responsible when they mess up.and trust that they will learn from their mistakes,Parenting is tough,being a teenager is tough.Forgiving is tough,sometimes we don't have the answers, just more questions,right now,these families need support .

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

To Bike:

I have 2 grown children, and it is my belief that kids need boundaries. I am not perfect, and truth be told, everyone could stand to attend "Best Parents in the World" classes.


Cvajsk03 sesz: " im so glad to hear most of u were not teens at one time........ most of u speak as if you were the perfict child and never done any wrong, GOD dont all parents wish they had kids like YOU"

You are missing the bigger picture. I believe that none of us who are parents now are insinuating that we were perfec teens. Hardly.

It is my belief that as a parent we become very angry when we read about teens who are in groups where booze is involved and then fatal accidents stem from that type of socialization and peer pressure.

I don't know how old you are, but when and if you have kids, perhaps you will understand how upsetting it is when kids are killed in needless accidents where there might have been other illegal factors involved.

I get the impresssion that most here are upset and saddened at the death of these 2 kids, but that we are also angry that steps were not taken to possibly prevent such a tragedy.

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

memo from work: Let's see if everyone is committed to this very important movement!


Parents of Teens Needed! Parents, be a part of the solution! Several Northwest Colorado agencies are working together to create a campaign to prevent underage drinking in our community. We need your feedback on our campaign ads as well as your thoughts and observations on teens and alcohol. If you are the parent of a teen, please help us by attending a short interactive discussion on Tuesday, June 26 from 7-8 pm in Conference Room 2 at Yampa Valley Medical Center. For more information or to RSVP, call Diane Miller at the VNA 871-7609. Refreshments will be provided. Diane Miller, Access to Care Coordinator Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association 940 Central Park Drive, Suite 101 Steamboat Springs, CO 80487 Phone (970) 879-1632

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lovelife 7 years, 5 months ago

Drinking of minors is never going to stop in this town. You can't blame the people who give it or buy it. It will alway be around for children to grab a hold of, are you going to blame parents that leave the alcohol out for their kids to get a hold of or just the people who buy it. I don't believe in under age drinking by any means but why do we have to blame someone. I guess it is just how our society works these day and frankly it makes me sick. Support the family and tell your kids this story, show them the pictures, it is a horrible accident that no one wants their family to go through but all we can do is be a mentor and a friend to kids by telling them the life lessons. Please give support to the family and friends of these two men! Pray for the Family!

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whitexoxo 7 years, 5 months ago

"The loss of the two young men is tragic and an unmitigated waste. But they alone are responsible for the choices they made." -Jazzslave

Agreed.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

you know dund: there are 500000000000000 campaings in this world NOW WHAT

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Just as I thought...you do not get the bigger picture.

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03:

Have you bothered to look into any of these "500000000000000 campaings [sic]"? Made any effort to look into their merits & disadvantages? Or do you just automatically sneer whenever an option is presented, and reflexively deride anyone who expresses interest in working towards a solution?

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

what is the bigger picture, the fact that our teens drink and do drugs....yea we all know that, and yes i am a parent of 4 and i know how hard it is to raise teens, and my sugestion to you is push bush out of office and run your self..... kids are kids and no matter how much you teach them they are still gona make wrong joices and expirament, maybe we need you to fallow every kid in the world around and make sure they are towing the line......you know im so sick of this, mistakes were made, and life was the price to pay.....so u take your 1 man or woman crusade and save the world.....you know that saying you win some you loose some....well that phrase was made for a reason you cant save them all

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

this is the second family member i have had killed by alcohol so i know all about it, and no matter how much u push the issue of no underage drinking or no drinking and driving the true fact is it is still here and alwaays will be, it will never go away as long as there is alcohol in this world.......so i suggest you figgure out a way to get rid of that then you will solve the problem

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honeystinger1 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03: You are right. No matter what's done, things like this will always occur. If any campaign helps someone thats great, but for our area I dont think it will ever change. After something like this happens kids chill out for a while, but then it's back to square one. It will never change. Everyone will have their different viewpoints (no matter how cruel), but know that everyone is thinking of your family. You have an entire community rallying for Chris and Sam and their families. Look to that instead of the negative, thoughtless, immature comments being made towards the boys. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

Thank You Honey, and my prayers are also with you and your brother, im so , so so sorry you had to witness this terrable tragady, but you can not turn back time all you can do is move forward and hope a leason is learned from this...... some will take what they saw and put to good use in the futer and some are gona get worse from this but that is what society is every one reacts different.... honey im so glad you and your brother were not injered

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03 SEZ:

..."and my sugestion to you is push bush out of office and run your self"...

Now all here can read into your true lunacy. Aside from your atrocious spelling, you now banter about "bush" being in or out of office.

Answer us this please - What does that statement have to do with 2 teens who died in a horrible, but perhaps preventable tragedy?

You further ridicule those of us who are at a breaking point with underage alcohol fatalities with the skewed proclamation that..."kids are kids and no matter how much you teach them they are still gona [sic] make wrong joices [sic] and expirament [sic],.

Let's rephrase this whole thing. If you are not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem.

I'll pray you can differentiate between the two.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

Thank You Honey, and my prayers are also with you and your brother, im so , so so sorry you had to witness this terrable tragady, but you can not turn back time all you can do is move forward and hope a leason is learned from this...... some will take what they saw and put to good use in the futer and some are gona get worse from this but that is what society is every one reacts different.... honey im so glad you and your brother were not injered. And i can see were the spelling cridicts worries are

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03: "...you win some you loose [sic] some..."

Wow. Breathtakingly compassionate of you. I'm sure the boys' families appreciate your thoughtful characterization.

Your attitude seems to be 'they're gonna do it anyway and nobody can do anything about it.'

I feel sorry for your kids.

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honeystinger1 7 years, 5 months ago

dundalk: Wow. Nice going. Obviously the loss of cvajks03's family member has pushed her over the edge. What a concept that maybe she is very angry over her loss. And that's pretty spiteful to remark about her spelling. My God, could you not come up with anything more clever?

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Honey:

Clever...kids need to quit drinking. Parents need to step up to the plate and take SERIOUS RESPONSIBILITY for their children.

The judges need to go after parents with serious jail time when a kid is arrested or cited for alcohol violations.

Those of us in the real world are sick to death of reading about kids who fold to peer pressure, behave in a reckless manner and create a general feeling of loss when we read day after day, month after month of teens dying far too young.

My empathy flies out the window when I read about repeat offenders with monumentally irresponsible parents adding to the equation of death before 21!

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

You know what is real funny yesterday most of us did not know each other, and now today we are here bickering back and forth and making enamies of people we dont know, now how ironic is that???? we have 2 boys dead from a very awful tragidy and we are bickering like children, some times i wonder if our teens are a little wiser, they are not here bickering!!! and dundalk, i really wish i could figure you out, we all want to save our kids but for generations now this has been going on, and people have tried to prevent it, but as you can see it is only getting worse, they teach about pear presure, drugs, drinking, and sex in schoolls, but what is it doing the teen rate of pregnance is higher now then ever, teen drinking higher now then ever, teen and drugs higher now then ever, so what does that tell you......it tells me unless, you take the drugs, alcohol, out of society it will never stop, and i dont see anyone shutting down all of the alcohol providers or drug providers, here were i live they jyust busted a big meth ring, and it seems as soon as they did that i bigger one grew, its just like weeds, the more you pull them the more they multaplie, it is a visios circle of life we are in and it is scarey. but it is a ride we will never get off till we pass to the other side

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LookoutJoe 7 years, 5 months ago

Well, as a 19 year old kid living in this valley, it's good to see all the people here who are truly concerned about the youth, and I sincerely appreciate that.

What happened to these kids was a terrble thing, and it hits me hard because my friends and I do our fair share of party camping just like this.

in my mind here are the main points:

Campfire by oil tanks? Ridiculously reckless. Second, I hear a lot of pepole saying here that these kids died because of reckless adults buying alcohol for them and not being responsible, and that if you stop this the problem ends.

But it wont, and it never will. People like to get out of their minds, it's a plain fact. You will never destroy the allure of being high by being a responsible parent, it just wont happen. Remeber when you were all young, I'm sure there was a degree of drug usage in your youth.

Things like this are accidents. If only they picked a place to camp that didn't have oil tanks, this wouldn't have happened. This is a tradgedy, but kids get drunk and do drugs, and you can't stop it.

Just do what you can to keep everyone safe, and just understand that being drunk and trying drugs is what everyone goes through as a kid. It's an ill of society, but I see no change in sight.

I wish peace to all who have been affected by this.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

Lookoutjoe, you hit it right on the nose honny, you are so right. AS a parent of 4 teens i know and understand what you are saying. and myself being a teen at one time....... I appriciate the parents voiceing there concern of our youth..... but like Joe said IT WILL NEVER STOP!!!!!!

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bikegirl 7 years, 5 months ago

to the families and friends of these two young men-wishing you peace and strength-

to jazz and dund-mean people ***

                           KARMA
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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Completely ignorant! Are cvajks03 and LookoutJoe really implying that because "it will never stop" that we should simply throw up our hands and say forget it? Are you seriously trying to send a message to our youth that because other people have tried and failed to grasp the seriousness of underage drinking, that no one else should step up to the plate and grasp this reckless bull by the horns?

Good thing that Salk didn't throw up his hands when finding a vaccine for Polio, or that Ben Franklin kept looking for illuminating ideas by which to light a dark room or that Glenn was able to walk on the moon so long ago.

Again, if you are not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem.

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LookoutJoe 7 years, 5 months ago

I don't think your examples are relevant. I think an example similar to this would be the war on drugs, which has been a complete failure. How would you stop it? By making sure all kids are kept indoors at all times and that people who buy kids alcohol are given the death penalty? Only the most radical protocol will end the problem. A lot of people drink underage, and really bad things can happen, but you can't stop them from drinking. Prohibition wouldn't stop it; nothing will stop kids from drinking. This was a terrible mistake made, it could have happened when they were sober.

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LookoutJoe 7 years, 5 months ago

and calling anyone who isnt a part of the solution a part of the problem is small minded and offensive. Again, I see adults being ignorant and they arent able to even look back to their own youths to try and relate. KIDS WONT STOP DRINKNING. We have to find another way to combat the problem.

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Look Out sez:

"I don't think your examples are relevant. ".

I agree, perhaps they are not. After all, Polio hasn't been seen in a while, and the light bulb was just a passing thought and well, men on the moon - who does that serve?

Those people didn't give up on inanimate ideas. It's too bad that so many on this forum are so willing to give up on our greatest gifts...OUR CHILDREN.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

Dundalk, I dont recall anyone saying they were giving up on anything, we are just stating facts, of course we will move on and continue to protect our youth and not give up, all we are sayiing is it will never go away, its been around for decades and it will be here many more decades

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

dundtalk:

If I correctly interpret cvajks03's adolescent ravings, he/she is all about live & let die, and tough s&!* for those who don't survive.

I can't disagree with LookoutJoe. Teenagers will always experiment and party. Instilling a real sense of personal responsibility is the only bulwark against the stupidity that was the fatal component of this train wreck.

I spent my high school summer vacations on my own, deckhanding on fishing boats. Long days, hard work, punctuated with occasional opportunities to party. None of us were injured or killed or jailed, because the opportunities were taken advantage of responsibly. Car keys were collected & secured, fire extinguishers were available (our gatherings typically took place on the beach around a bonfire), a first aid kit generally borrowed from a boat one of us was employed on, with the knowledge of the vessel's skipper who knew where we were and what we were doing - and monitored by a designated non drinker.

We did all of this with the understanding that if certain parents were apprised of our activity, there would be hell to pay, and we all agreed that the price would be remitted if it ever came to that - so we made certain that our get togethers were safe and as unlikely as possible to attract attention.

Fortunately, the responsible among us outnumbered the reprobates, and the nitwits were kept in line. It sounds as if there were no responsible parties at the reservoir the other night. That it apparently occurred to no one to question the safety of lighting a fire near a freaking oil tank is mind-blowing.

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03:

So, you're claiming that because kids have been engaging in dangerous behavior, and it's been going on for years, we should just enthrall ourselves to the behavior, accept and announce defeat.

Sorry sweetie, I don't give up that easily. Kids are worth the effort. It's a darn shame that by the words of some posters on this and previous alcohol related issues there isn't a passion here.

Sbvor: Dianne Miller did not post here, but rather an employee memo was...inviting the public to come together for the greater good.

BTW, Dundalk is in the middle of penning her second book; a story of an alcoholic who struggles through the DT's.

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

nice interpretation JAZZ......but not even close....but nice try hun

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

DUND, WE ARE ALL SPINNING IN CIRCLES HERE, I DONT GIVE UP ON THE YOUTH BUT I DI ON YOU

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emra 7 years, 5 months ago

Chris was a part of our family for a short time he was very quiet and kind. He loved and was loved my his family. Chris loved to fish, camp, hunt and fourwheel. These are the things we should remember about him. My heart hurts for the families of both of these boys. You are in our prayers and thoughts. GOD BLESS YOU and give you strength

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

NICE TRY JAZZ BUT NOT QUITE RIGHT....TRY AGAIN

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cvajks03 7 years, 5 months ago

Emra, you are so right we got way to caught up in the political side of this, and have forgot what this is really about. i dont live around there but close enough and am related to 1 of the boys so i will be coming that way for the funeral and i hope there are more people like you and honny there to meet then the ones ive delt with on here. GOD BLSS

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

cvajks03: Re-read all of your posts, look up all subliminal meanings in your banter and then get back to me.

Have a nice evening.

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LivingFree 7 years, 5 months ago

Dund you a cold person. Selfish and mean. I feel sympathy for you. You obviously have some issues to want to bash my mother in her time of need.

Dund writes: "While compassion can not discriminate, the mother of one of the boys had a history of her kids getting in trouble. Where was that good parenting and motherly advice when the other brother had a MVA a few months ago and had to be flown out?" Thank you so much for bendind a seperate issue (the car accident to suit your own will. Lucky the internet wasnt around for anyone to bash the parent and call Rosemary "stupid" for putting herself in that position.

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upstream 7 years, 5 months ago

my heart aches for the families and friends of the deceased boys- just as it does for the families and friends of the far, far too many south routt youngsters who have died behind alcohol and drugs in the 8 years I have lived here.

cvajks...I empathize with your loss, but you do not have the monopoly on sorrow. You have chosen to focus huge amounts of time to this forum (way too much in my opinion)- so I have to believe you understand that not all of us share your point of view. And, I would ask you to rethink your assertions that those who express outrage and indignation at having to bury yet more of our kids lack compassion and sympathy.

Like many I spent my teenage years in a near desperate attempt at self-destruction...fast cars, alcohol, drugs. I had many, many opportunities to make piss poor decisions and often did. It was the constant voices around me reminding me that my behavior was unacceptable and that the people who loved me wanted me home safe that kept me just this side of disaster. Our youth need to hear our voices- full of love, concern and absolute indignation at self-destructive behaviors. Sadly, too many of the voices we hear in south routt are seated on a bar stool. It is way past time for the rest of us to speak up- I know for a fact that kids are listening (and watching...) and learning. Each time I have the opportunity to interact with one of our teenagers I make it a point to ask them to do me the favor of staying safe,, whether it be in regards to sex, drugs, alcohol or life in general. Let us all remind our youngsters everyday that they are precious and we want them home safely. just a thought...

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LivingFree 7 years, 5 months ago

I just sat down in front of my computer to read the communities comments on this matter and I'm curious: How many of you that are bashing the deaths of these wonderful boys and screaming your heads about underage drinking are sitting in front of your computer with a buzz? Lead by example. You cant tell someone to not do something when your doing it yourself.......

First of all I know both of those boys very well. Both of those boys were only trying to have fun along with every other person at that party gone wrong. They just happened to be the unlucky ones who did not get down before the tank ignited for one reason or another. Granted the group did a terrible job of picking location but I guarantee not a single person there wanted or even thought that the tank had a chance of taking off like a rocket with 2 boys on top of it. Poor forsight I agree but think of the people who were there that had to watch 2 of there friends killed because of a groups ignorance. Yes I say IGNORANCE because Stupid is not the word for it. A couple hundred dollars worth of chainlink fence and a few signs will deture most weekend party seekers. Had any of these people known the possible consiquences of partying on the tanks this wouldnt have happened. C'mon guys....

Also my thanks for the nice comments from you guys!! :) Sam is my little brother. Chris was a wonderful guy that had a smile on all the time that would melt your heart.

I drove to the site of the accident and was the first to hear positive identification of the dead and undertook the task of telling my mother and my remaining brother that Sam and Chris had died only to drive to Chris' family and inform them as well. This is a very hard thing to do and I would not wish it on anybody at anytime for any reason.

As for the nasty heartless comments: Thank you for those as well!! I'm glad you have hopes and cares for your teens and mabye soon you'll wave your magic wand and make it all better. There is always a way to fix the situation. I'm just glad that there will be people there to point fingers and place blame when something goes wrong with that.

"Kids are worth the effort." and being a parent myself I understand this and do everything in the world for my family.

No parent should ever have to bury children.... I only hope that teens and adults alike may learn a valuable lesson from all of this. It was a fatal mistake that im sure everyone wishes they could take back but its done now. Nothing can bring my little brother or Chris back.

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bikegirl 7 years, 5 months ago

ok so now that people have had a day to place blame,pass judgement,and bicker back and forth,could you all say a prayer for the families and open your heart to their suffering. Namaste

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learn4life 7 years, 5 months ago

I am not sure who said in the massive amounts of comments posted but it comes down to the fact that parents need to be very active within their kids lives. No I do not follow my son to the parties he chooses to go to but we have a very open line of communication. This past spring he began to hang around with a girl that was present at that party. We had a very in depth conversation about what that "crowd" of kids were about. After a couple of days of rebellion I know that my words finally sunk in because he cut ties with that girl knowing that the direction that she was heading was no where near the direction he was going. Had we not had the close relationship we have, that was not built over night, he may have been there that night- and who knows. Parents, we cannot save the world and all of its' children, but we can be sure to take good care of those living angels that bless our lives everyday. Blessed be the souls that have past.

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bcpow 7 years, 5 months ago

dundalk and sbvor...are they both the reincarnation of ###s and davinci? The wormtongue tone, the holier than though and the witty citations lead me to believe so. She would make Bush appointed Darwin proud.

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

Learn: A voice of reason reveals itself from the web!

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

bcpow:

The phrase you're groping for is 'holier than THOU.'

Not to worry, THOUGH. You and cvajks03 can compair noats at thuh nekst GED reyoonyin.

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Troutfish0507 7 years, 5 months ago

Dear LivingFree, My heart goes out to you and your family. i know that nothing that i can say can bring sam back, but you and your family are in my prayers. Sam was a good friend of mine and he well be missed dearly. im sorry u had to be the one that delivered the bad news to both families, you are a very brave and caring individual. Stay strong and dont worry about what other people say, until they lose a family member themselves they well never truly be able to know the pain and suffering that you and your family is going through. i also happen to be a good friend of jules' and i hope that you all well have the strenght to pull through this tragedy. Sam and chris well live on forever in our memories and no one can take those memories away from us. I know that you dont know me very well but jules does and if you guys need anything please let me know. With love, Cindy

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

BCPOW: Holier than thou...love it. All the years at Dominican Boarding school finally paid off. Yippie! Life strives towards dominance even when a chromosome is absent in the genetic make-up!

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

TROUT SEZ:

..."Stay strong and don't worry about what other people say, until they lose a family member themselves they well never truly be able to know the pain and suffering that you and your family is going through..."

Thank you for the acute observation:

Rosemary Lorio killed in the late 70's by a drunk driver. My aunt, at 16 y/o of age never saw that 17th birthday. I think I am entitiled to proffer my dismay at the teen issue as it relates to underage drinking,

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lindaanddan 7 years, 5 months ago

To the young youth's ,I thought I heard something of a vigil in decker park ? I s this true? when will it be?So that family's can be there ??? Anyone know chris & sam's favorive tunes would be helpful ...for music at memorial. thanks linda

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dundalk 7 years, 5 months ago

bikegirl: Thanks for the heads up on the karma. Wow can't wait to encounter it. You have a nice day.

I don't perceive any of my posts as mean. I believe that in almost all of my posts I verbate the mantra of this whole incident being a tragedy...possibly one which could have been avoided.

I bring to the table though a form of questioning as to why there are continued under-age drinking arrests and fatalities when most parents are so eager to try and cease this needless sorrow after the damage is done.

What have I received in return? Mean spirited comments, narrow-minded posters and some who think I am the anti-christ.

Here's the bottom line for me - Kids need to be held accountable for their actions, just as parents should. What is one to think when reading that "Sam" had dropped out of high school? Who should we blame for that? Education is one of many keys available to our youth to get them out of the gutter and into a productive avenue for the future.

It is very accurate that not all parents can control their childrens' actions; however, once a pattern is laid out, at what point do we, as an overall community, need to step up to the plate and make sure that the lost kids don't slip through the cracks?

I am angry and pissed that 2 kids lost their lives at the start gate. Such a waste, a needless tragedy, etc. However, with that concern comes even more anger that this accident quite possibly could have been prevented if the parents had taken their responsibilities just a bit more seriously before last Saturday night.

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katrinkakelly 7 years, 5 months ago

I agree that kids must be accountable for their own actions. I am so tired of hearing the excuse that my parents, my friends or whatever made me do it.

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JQPUBLIC 7 years, 5 months ago

I'm sorry, I know I am going to sound cold and callous but something needs to be done to prevent any more of these tragedies. My heart goes out to the boys who lost their lives, not the friends and family crying about their loss; family and friends is where the intervention should have come from and where it could have made a difference. Too many times I have watched kids walk into a bar to tell their parent where they were going and have the parent say ok (no questions asked), too many times I have seen kids told (by a drunk parent) they couldn't do something because they had to baby-sit their siblings, too many times I heard the parent say they would be home in an hour only to have the kid call every half hour until closing, too many times I have watched parents drink for hours while their children ran loose in the bar. I have seen this kind of behavior as a bartender and as a patron but it is the main reason I quit working in the alcohol industry. YOU CAN'T RAISE A CHILD SITTING ON A BAR STOOL. I watched parents throw fits and threaten to sue because police officers were being too tough on their child (3rd & 4th offenses), parents thought a small amount of pot or a six pack should be overlooked, "it is a small town after all". Oak Creek had a police department that truly cared about the youth but they wouldn't mollycoddle them as the parents thought they should. The OCPD also didn't tolerate DUI's, bar fights, or domestic abuse, which upset the drunks and druggies, SO, I say when a community backs a government that does away with law enforcement, they have to take responsibility when tragedy occurs. SOBER PARENTING will go a long way towards teaching children responsibility; drunkenness is learned behavior and you need to show your kids you don't have to be drunk (or high) to have fun. To those that say all teens will experiment no matter what you do:too many of these teens and young adults have already made alcohol a way of life, it's not just a teens curiosity.... adults justifying their aid to these parties by saying "they are going to do it anyway" just tells the kids that this is acceptable behavior... please re-think your position and the message you are sending.

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

JQPUBLIC

Preaching personal responsibility will make you a pariah here. Welcome to the club.

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bcpow 7 years, 5 months ago

Jazzslayve...now we should be bashing people that take the GED? Nice to know that you have the time to spell check posts. Next time I will just send it to you before I submit. And maybe I will send it to ##s so she can edit the content. What's the next name dundalk?

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JazzSlave 7 years, 5 months ago

bcpow:

We should bash people who self-righteously jump into a heated argument with nothing more than ad-hominem name calling, and [amusingly] can't quite manage the vocabulary to pull it off. Since that is the only thing you have contributed to this thread, it is reasonable to question your intellect & education.

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123now 7 years, 5 months ago

To bcpow: What you said to Jazzslayve about the spell checking was GREAT....... I applaud you.....

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