Saturday, November 18, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Letter: From the father of a dead 16-year-old, forgiveness


Editor's note: Kelmy Tanon, a 16-year-old student at St. Petersburg High School, died last week in a three-vehicle crash that the Florida Highway Patrol says was triggered when a pickup driven by 67-year-old Julian Tanner rear-ended another vehicle. This is a letter from Kelmy's dad, Shane Tiernan, to that driver.

Dear Mr. Tanner,

We haven't met, but you caused the car crash that took my son's life. His name was Kelmy. He was 16. He wasn't perfect but he was amazing. He loved music and comic books and girls. He was ridiculous and loud, protective of his siblings and good at anything he tried. His room was always a disaster and he hated doing dishes. I think you get the picture.

I can't imagine your pain right now and that's why I'm writing — to let you know that I forgive you. I realize that people make mistakes and sometimes those mistakes cause others pain. I know that you deeply regret what has happened. I know that this situation could have happened to anyone, and I think that at this point you would probably gladly trade places with my son if you could. But you can't, and so both of our lives have been irrevocably changed by a cruel twist of fate.

I don't know what the future holds for you, but I sincerely hope that you will not be punished by the state. If there is anything I can do to help prevent that, please let me know. Also if there is anything I can do to help ease the pain of your regret, please contact me.

We are all just staggering around on this planet trying to figure out how to make ourselves, and hopefully others, happy. I hope this letter helps you and I hope that it helps you make a difference to the people in your life.


Shane Tiernan, aka Kelmy's dad, St. Petersburg


Monday’s letters: Doctors should speak up on harassment

Sexual harassmentDoctors need to speak upThe recent widespread recognition, followed by disapproval, of sexual harassment across many workplaces signals a paradigm shift in social attitudes toward abuse of power that is long overdue.The male-dominate...
Published: 11/17/17

Saturday’s letters: Reservoir project off to a good start

Lake OkeechobeeReservoir project off to good startThis year, more than 70,000 Floridians contacted their legislators to support expediting a reservoir project south of Lake Okeechobee. Another 150 business people, anglers, health care professionals a...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Sunday’s letters: Roundabout way to help the rich

Senate GOP’s tax plan to kill ACA mandate | Nov. 15Devious way to hurt middle classSo, let’s see if we have this straight. The proposed amendment to the Senate tax plan, to kill the individual mandate, will cause young people to not buy health in...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/17/17

Friday’s letters: Stop laying blame on teachers

Hillsborough teachers are set to protest | Nov. 14Stop laying blame on teachersI am a veteran teacher, coming up on 30 years of service to public education. My mother was also an educator, clocking over 40 years of service in public education. Sh...
Published: 11/15/17
Updated: 11/16/17

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Nov. 17

Questioning fees draws snarky responseYou are probably aware of the new Pasco utility fees that became effective last month.Under the dubious title of "convenience fee" for making utility payments by credit card or e-check, Pasco Utilities adds $2.75...
Published: 11/15/17

Wednesday’s letters: Generosity makes all the difference

National Adoption MonthThe difference generosity makesAs a football coach, I always had to be ready to overcome unexpected challenges. With injuries, crowd noise and especially weather, the game plan is always adjusting to overcome adversity.Our stat...
Published: 11/13/17
Updated: 11/14/17

Monday’s letters: Moore is not fit for public office

Woman: Candidate pursued her as a teen | Nov. 10Moore is not fit for public officeIt is sad that Roy Moore, a self-professed religious man, is running for a Senate seat when he is clearly unfit for any job involving the public for so many reasons...
Published: 11/10/17
Updated: 11/13/17

Monday’s letters: Don’t fall for the tax cut ruse

Tax billDon’t take your eye off the ballThe rush is on. The Republican Congress is rushing to pass a modest tax cut for the middle class while giving corporations a massive tax cut. While taking away some of the tax deductions from ordinary taxpayers...
Published: 11/10/17

Sunday’s letters: End greyhound racing in Florida

Tom Lee wants to phase out greyhound racing | Nov. 8Put a stop to this cruel industryKudos to Sen. Tom Lee for shepherding a constitutional amendment to end greyhound racing in Florida. Greyhounds forced to race live in misery and frequently die ...
Published: 11/09/17
Updated: 11/10/17

Friday’s letters: Hillsborough school making strong progress

Hillsborough school district in financial, leadership crisis | Nov. 5, editorialSchool district’s achievementsWhile I respect the Times’ editors and acknowledge our district is facing financial challenges (facing them head-on, in fact), I feel it...
Published: 11/08/17
Updated: 11/09/17