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Letter: Beginning of destruction of area by sand mining breaks their hearts

TO THE EDITOR: Thirty-seven years ago, my husband and I took a train trip from the Twin Cities to Red Wing, and became engaged in that beautiful community.

We married and moved to West Central Minnesota, where we raised our three sons. We often visited SE Minnesota and Western Wisconsin, and always loved this area.

This spring, we felt so lucky to move to rural Prescott in our retirement. We have enjoyed several day trips since, where we have had the pleasure of driving down Hwy. 35, and agree with the honor it was given as "the most beautiful drive in North America." We visited Hager City, Red Wing, Diamond Bluff, Maiden Rock and Stockholm (for the absolutely best pie ever). We feel so lucky to be surrounded by such beauty.

That is why it breaks our hearts to see the beginning of the destruction of this area by sand mining. Of course, the companies which intend to mine in this area are from out of state. This is not their home, so they don't care if their trucks are lumbering down the roads, with silica sand flying into our fields, our homes, our businesses. They have billions. So handing out a million here and there for rights is nothing to them.

However, it is beyond me how people who live here, who have relatives and friends in the area, could even consider selling the rights to these people. It is beyond belief that anyone could have such disregard for others that they would enable this travesty.

I believe that we must do all that we can to put a halt to this assault, to maintain the beauty and serenity of Western Wisconsin and Southeastern Minnesota.