I am writing this letter today in hopes of making one small change for the better. Pensacola has been my home since 2002. I am – usually – proud to say it. I spend a lot of time traveling in California and the Southwest and there is nowhere else I would rather be than home in Pensacola. But home is not just a place. It is a place of security, comfort and love. It is a state of mind.
Every time I pass the Civic Center, however, this peaceful bliss is shattered. Why is it that we have a street named after a convicted criminal? Are the vestiges of W. D. Childer’s political power still deeply rooted here? Can’t we do better than that? Let me offer an alternative. Why not John Fogg Way? John Fogg embodies all the best attributes of Pensacola. He was a devoted mayor for years. He was a Marine. He was a Blue Angel Pilot. He was, is and I submit will always be, a man of unquestionable morals and honor. And, he is a friend to anyone he meets.
So, while we worry about the ills of the world, let’s stop and take a minute to change one small part of it to recognize a good man who has helped this city so much instead of someone who used political power to his own advantage. Let’s remove the tawdry memory of W. D. Childers and replace it with the inspiration of John Fogg.
Please rename the street by the Civic Center to show that instead of rewarding bad deeds, good deeds should be rewarded.
James R. J. Scheltema