To the Editor:
I would like this letter to be brought to the attention of all the managers of Mount Desert Island towns, Acadia park staff and the voting residents of MDI.
Our family suffered a fatal loss almost one month ago at Ikes Point in Acadia at Echo Lake. Many of you by now know the details. My 39-year-old son-in-law suffered a massive heart attack while swimming with his wife, my daughter and their three young daughters.
Frantic attempts to call for help were fruitless. There is no cell service at Ikes Point. The same holds true in and many, many other places in Acadia. And so, as my daughter was performing CPR on her husband, she was trying to get through on her cell phone. Not being able to quickly summon help caused way more anguish than ever should be necessary.
In this day and age, cell phones are no longer a luxury. We depend on them like our right arm. We expect to have service!
I find it reprehensible that this island, with so many visitors from around the world, home to one of the most spectacular and popular national parks, still has dead spots with no cell phone reception.
If you, the voters, leaders and town managers, cannot decide to vote for and pay for island-wide cell coverage with zero dead spots throughout this island, then I implore you to install emergency call boxes at all recreational areas.
Perhaps Nathan could not have been saved had there been cell service. But the emotional toll taken on my daughter and her children might have been lessened.
I do want to take this moment to thank the Northeast Harbor Ambulance, Police and Fire Departments for going to the scene, and especially to my old friend Jim Wilmerding. I know they did everything they could to save Nathan’s life.
Robin Reath Graves