I just got off the phone with Sal Sirabella, Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll’s chief of staff. They are in the midst of drafting a letter of apology to Marine Staff Sgt. Joseph Goodrich’s family, which I will post as soon as Sirabella faxes it over. Sirabella read parts of the letter on the phone, and it will include boilerplate pablum about how Knoll “supports the troops” and is “sorry for the misunderstanding” (as if the family is somehow to blame for misinterpreting her anti-war sermonizing at Staff Sgt. Goodrich’s mass?).
Meantime, Sirabella says that Knoll has no plans to make herself available for public comment about her obnoxious crashing of Staff Sgt. Goodrich’s funeral. She will not hold a press conference. She will not take phone calls from the media. She will not address constituents who have complained or veterans who have protested.
If Knoll thinks the letter is going to put things to rest, she clearly misunderstands the situation.
Update 4pm EST: Here’s the letter from Knoll addressed to Sgt. Goodrich’s wife…
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 25, 2005
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
Office of the Lieutenant Governor
Commonwealth News Bureau
Room 200, Main Capitol
Harrisburg, PA 17120
LT. GOVERNOR CATHERINE BAKER KNOLL LETTER OF APOLOGY
HARRISBURG: July 25, 2005
Dear Mrs. Goodrich,
I am writing to further apologize and clarify what happened at the funeral of your beloved husband, Joseph. As a wife and mother, I can only imagine how difficult it must be to lose your spouse so suddenly. As an adored member of your family and one of Pennsylvania’s sons serving with soldiers from across the commonwealth, SSGT Joseph Goodrich, is one of this nation’s heroes.
As I said in my phone message to Rhonda, after I learned through press reports that your family was offended by my attendance, I was incredibly upset. I wanted to assure you once again that my intention was not to add to what must be a tremendously, heartbreaking, difficult period.
The war on terror is an immensely personal conflict for the thousands of people whose families continue to serve with honor, and I have attended dozens of funerals to offer my sympathy and condolences to the families of soldiers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
My heart and prayers are with your family, and to the families of all the men and women serving the cause of freedom in the fight against terror. I unfortunately, did not arrive at the church services for SSGT Goodrich’s funeral in time to offer my personal condolences to you. As I also mentioned on Rhonda’s phone message, as I do with many Pennsylvanians I meet, I offered my business card so she could contact me, and as a sign of my willingness to help the family through this difficult time in any way I can. To do anything that was deemed insensitive was completely counter to my intent.
Sergeant Goodrich’s service was beyond the call of duty. If my regard for his family’s grief was seen another way, it is thoroughly regrettable. The fact that you have been offended deserves and receives my most profound apology.
I will continue to support our troops in my role as Lt. Governor and support our President as an American. That I somehow conveyed an impression that was interpreted as other than that will forever be saddening and upsetting to me.
Again, please accept my heartfelt apology and deepest sympathy.
Catherine Baker Knoll
Brian J. Noggle observes: “When the first words of a personal message are FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, you know it’s a poll-felt communication from a politician.”
Blackfive: ““One of Pennsylvania’s sons”? Guess that makes the Lieutenant Governor the Wicked Step-Mother…”
School offers counseling for traumatized students who saw classmate chew breakfast pastry into shape of gun
March 5, 2013 05:15 PM by Doug Powers
May 1, 2013 09:17 AM by Michelle Malkin
November 22, 2013 11:06 PM by Doug Powers
May 29, 2013 01:18 PM by Michelle Malkin
June 21, 2013 12:17 PM by Michelle Malkin