Bridge closing is wrong

Dear Editor, I was saddened to read that there is a likely closing of the Waldrip Bridge. To those of us who grew up in that community, it was and is a landmark. As a very young girl I recall we would drive down there and look off the bridge at the water flowing beneath. Everything looms so much bigger through a child’s eyes and I recall how massive it seemed. In 1965 we three Phillips girls started going to school in Santa Anna. We drove across that bridge twice a day to Joe Wise’s place where we caught the school bus. At first we were apprehensive about driving over the bridge but as the years unfolded it became just another part of our day and we thought nothing of it. We referred to it as the ‘rickety rackety bridge’ and I can still, 30 some odd years later hear in my mind the sound as I drove over the bridge. It was and it is a part of history and a part of the lives of those who grew up there. In 1970 I met my future husband and introduced him to the lovely, but even then, scary old bridge. He developed his own love and respect for it and it’s place in history, and in fact we even stole a kiss or two on that bridge. In 1973 we moved to Arizona. Every time we would go back to Texas, even though my parents had long since left that area, we would drive that way to see the ‘rickety rackety old bridge.” We would tell our kids the story about it, about how it was such a part of our lives, our childhood, our school years and even our dating years. I have photos of my own children when they were quite small, peering off the bridge in amazement, just as their own mother did when I was their age. We shared with them our memories and then we drove them across it and once again heard the familiar sounds of ‘clickety clack, clickety clack’. history repeating itself. In 1985 we attended the Lohn Homecoming. The Phillips girls reunited on the old bridge to reminisce and to take photographs. It is a massive part of McCulloch County/Coleman County history. To close it would be wrong. You must do whatever necessary to preserve that part of history’ please. Wood rots but can be replacd, but history must remain. Too many things are changing in this world. May at least some of our childhood memories be preserved. I urge the citizens of both McCulloch and Coleman counties to start petitions to save the Waldrip Bridge. Sincerely, Kittie Phillips Preas Willcox, Arizona

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