I established Westerly Residents for Thoughtful Development (WRFTD) in 1984. Then as now, the goal is thoughtful development in order to protect the health, safety, welfare and property values of Westerly residents from special interest uses invading long established residential neighborhoods.
Resolving the airport operations issue in favor of Westerly residents is the current objective. It has no intention of stooping to front page trash talk and innuendo.
First and foremost, I am committed to WRFTD’s current task and I am passionate about making sure Westerly residents’ interests come first. On a personal level, as a member of the Moore family, we would be nowhere without the dedicated and devoted services provided by generation upon generation of Westerly families.
My father, Cyril V. Moore, created Moorewoods for the outdoor health and pleasure of Westerly families to enjoy the fresh air, walk their dogs and as a simple respite from everyday chores. As the first man to fly solo out of the Westerly Airport, in 1941, with little more than 10 hours flying time to his credit, ‘Cy’ won the distinction of christening the Westerly Airport by taking a Stinson 105 down its gravel runway and into the salty South County ozone, the same year I was made honorary Guardian of the Airport by the Town Council.
My father rededicated himself to flying in 1973, getting his private pilot’s license from Jeff Helms of Helms Aviation, located at the Westerly Airport. I followed by getting my private pilot’s license from Jeff shortly thereafter, which then prompted my father to buy a small plane that we both enjoyed until his age and a heart issue made insurance to maintain the plane prohibitive. Our plane was given to the Bishop of Alaska to help him oversee his far-flung flock of parishioners.
Whoever thought my honorary guardianship would come into prominence 73 years later? But, it has in a most dramatic and traumatic fashion.
The Rhode Island Airport Corporation filed eminent domain proceedings against the freshwater wetlands portion, one of the diverse habitats in Moorewoords. My first thought was, no way is RIAC going to take away any part of my father’s precious present to the folks of Westerly. Furthermore, I was quite sure my father would make quite sure I’d be struck by lightening if I didn’t do everything in my power to protect his interests in Moorewoods, and the airport as well. From the article that was written about his solo adventure: “‘It’s a great little airport,’ he maintains. Naturally a modest person, he doesn’t like to talk too much about his flying, ‘but I do want to give the Westerly Airport a boost,’ (economically), he said.”
Of course I don’t want to see the airport closed any more than I will permit those with no heart and soul in the interests of Westerly residents to advance their own interests. Need I say any more about what Westerly Residents for Thoughtful Development efforts, intentions and objectives are?
A very happy Thanksgiving past and joyous Merry Christmas upcoming!
Hatsy H. MooreWesterly
Moore is President of Westerly Residents For Thoughtful Development.