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LETTER: Boiler replacement brings back memories

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To the editor:
The recent article on the replacement of the boiler at Anderson County High School brought back many nostalgic memories for me.
Many of your readers remember, and I hope remember fondly, my father, the later Andrew Bird, who served as school superintendent from 1961 to 1976. As I was born in 1967, I do not remember the events as they happened, and I am sure time and memory have melded my recollections of the story.
Shortly after the high school was built, gas pressure in Lawrenceburg dropped due to an extremely cold winter. When this happened, the boiler went out at the high school.
With the boiler out in that bitter cold, all of the pipes would have frozen and have destroyed the classrooms in the new school. He often told of going to Louisville in an old International truck that the board owned, with a check written by then-treasurer Mrs. Emma B. Ward after consulting with various board members at the time, including Jimmy Catlett, Tommy Cotton, Robert Champion and others to purchase the replacement.
If it was a part or whole boiler I do not know for sure, but whatever it was it was a massive part.
One of our local plumbers installed the new components over Christmas break to ensure the pipes didn’t freeze.
While there are many particulars that I’m sure time and memory have muddled, I do think the gist of the story is true. Many of the people who worked for Mr. Bird and lived these events I am sure recall better than I.
As I read the article in The Anderson News about the 2010 $90,000 emergency replacement boiler, the engineers and out-of-town contractors needed for the job, and the delay and hope for warm weather in installing the replacement, I can’t help but wonder how much of what has happened since 1967 is really progress.
Thank you for a chance to remember one last time this story that my father so often told.
David Bird
Lawrenceburg