P.L. Phillips's letter in the July 2, 2004 Roundup expresses a very isolated opinion and does not represent the feelings of the community toward the Forest Service and the management of the Willow Fire.
Phillips states in part, "I know a little of what I say...." and by the conclusions drawn in Phillips's letter it looks like "I know a little...." is quite accurate.
In my opinion, the majority of the residents in the Payson area are very satisfied with the Forest Service's performance and management of the Willow Fire. People in general are not "... mad about some of the Forest Service practice with fires," as Phillips states.
I am sure that decisions related to the management of a wild fire are very difficult to make given so many unpredictable factors i.e. weather, terrain, fuel, etc. I salute the people making these difficult decisions and support their judgment completely in this case.
To criticize the decisions related to fire management and staff allocation as Phillips does while the fire is still being aggressively fought demonstrates, in my opinion, a phenomenal lack of gratitude.
Keep up the good work, firefighters. The Payson community is very grateful for all your hard work and for the risks you are taking to protect us.
Joel G. Mona, Payson