SEE MORE ON THIS REMARKABLE MAN’S LIFE ON THE MARCH 17TH ENTRY BELOW!
The Nisqually Valley News called me yesterday to ask me about Ed’s life.
There was a key question asked on which I paused:
“Why was Ed so involved in Yelm city issues.”
It was then in that moment that I paused & realized people did not truly understand Ed and his pasison for this community. Mayor Harding has said about people who speak-up on city issues that they are against growth here – people such as this writer, Bill Hashim, Ed & others. That is just not true & the way politicians spin things these days about anyone not in-line with their agenda — make them the villain!
I told the newspaper Ed was an educated and experienced man.
Ed had BS & MS degrees in Civil Engineering with specialization in Soil Mechanics, Hydrology and Coastal Processes. He worked in General Civil Consulting, Geotechnical and Structural Design in the New York/New Jersey area for 9 years & then spent 7 years with the Arabian American Oil Company (ARAMCO) as the Corporate Waterfront/Offshore Geotechnical Specialist. He then moved to Exxon’s Production Research Company (EPRCo). He lived with his family during those years on a compound in Saudi Arabia.
Ed saw the Mayor, his predecessor, Yelm’s City Council & City Planners making decisions that would affect this town for generations, all without proper knowledge and due diligence. Indeed, most of the people who serve as this town’s leaders have little experience or wisdom gained from living outside of this area for any length of years and in many aspects, do not have the education or background to support some of their actions, often times placing sole responsibility on being informed by a mere staff report from a city planner, a report not fully read or understood. Ed was for responsible growth in alignment with the land, air & water resources to be able to integrate that with little environmental impact.
Ed’s experience was in soils, ground water run-off, ground water recharge and he was an expert in his field. He shared his views only to assist this town’s leaders to be better informed and was not involved in this city’s issues “just to cause chaos” as Mayor Harding described some in his NVN column today. City Hall was not Ed’s enemy. He respected & honored everyone, even those with whom he disagreed.
Ed Wiltsie loved this town as much as any father who loves his children. Everyone who knew Ed can tell you his paternalistic nature to care for all he loved. That’s why he was involved, period!
If that caused chaos and the community was pressed to take their blinders off and see things going on here in a different light, then that was a good thing. Ed wanted this pristine place to remain unmolested for future generations by the likes of a 5,000 home development, super big-box store & choking traffic – a place he genuinely loved & relished the beauty!