Photo: Yelm Community Blog
Former Olympia Professional Engineer and area resident Ed Wiltsie (deceased) stood before the Yelm City Council many times in 2005 and later in 2006, about newly-elected Mayor Harding’s expansion plans from one of the state’s largest developments at the time, stating such phenomenal growth would draw “big city” problems like crime, drugs, horrific traffic accidents and other issues that would require investments in social services. He and others were ignored and often ridiculed by councilors and in the newspaper. Harding’s folly of putting Yelm on the map in growing this town 100%, doubling in size during his tenure, drew exponential crime as Wiltsie predicted, and has indeed been prophetic, as this disturbing news flash this afternoon attests:
– “Man dies after setting himself on fire in Yelm”
* The man died early Wednesday morning
* He was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center
* Yelm police chief thanks witnesses who tried to help
“A 23-year-old Roy man died after lighting himself on fire near the Yelm Safeway late Tuesday night.
‘In my career, I’ve never seen anything like this,’ said Yelm police Chief Todd Stancil. ‘It’s a sad, horrific story,’ quoting Amelia Dickson, The Olympian.
My heart goes out to Chief Stancil and his staff and Fire Chief King and his team for having to deal with such a horrific scene that will impact them for the rest of their lives. They need all of our support and perhaps even some sort of assistance for the ravages of PTSD. Many in our community are hurting and Mayor Harding does not possess the understanding, knowledge or will to propose funding for social services here for our friends and neighbors. Yelm has also attracted an abundance of people giving to this country in military services that also have PTSD and need this community’s help. I call on Mayor Harding and perhaps our military-experienced Councilors Molly Carmody and Tad Stillwell to lead a symposium on what we can do locally so this does not happen again!