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The Many Ways We Suck

The crime-trauma cleaning industry is not exactly happy with our story.

As a professional crime/trauma scene cleaner, I felt your "article" ["Death's Cleaning Lady," August 2] was very inappropriate and disrespectful. It makes me wonder what you would write if you climbed aboard the helicopter with me and spent a shift responding to motor vehicle accidents and heart attacks. "Old guy still gets off on flying in helicopter" would be of the same caliber.

Our society is fairly immature when it comes to the subject of death and dying, and your writing has underlined that fact once again. A little investigation and time on the phone would have produced many positive responses from individuals who have had to rely on a biohazard cleanup service to help put their lives back together.

Please save your talents for the local high school newspaper and spare us having to read your early attempts at journalism.

Bill Coye
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Just curious why you made Betty out to be an old lady who lives in a shack. And you made no mention of how to reach her, which can be quite important to families of loved ones who leave behind a traumatic situation.

I have had several articles written about my company and me in particular in a much more positive light. Betty runs a knowledgeable crime scene cleanup company and deserves much more respect than your article gave her. I think you owe her a sincere apology and perhaps a follow-up article, which includes her contact information and a picture that she provides for you.

Cory Chalmers
Rancho Cucamonga, California

The reason we get into the industry is to save family members and friends from dealing with traumatic scenes. I can tell you that I wish I knew of their existence when my grandfather was murdered in his home. Instead we, the family, cleaned the aftermath. It's not exactly what you want to remember. Nor did we realize that there are federal regulations on the disposal of hazardous waste, which I noticed you didn't even mention.

Instead of looking at our industry as creepy or spooky, perhaps you should step back and ask yourself: Could you clean up after the loss of one of your parents or, heaven forbid, your child? Our hearts are what put us in this industry to save yours from being broken even worse.

Extreme Clean Crime-Scene Cleanup
Norman, Oklahoma

I thought this story ["Death's Cleaning Lady," August 2] was very interesting. However, I do not think it did any justice to Ms. Brown.

I feel you should have focused more on the fact that the job has to be extremely difficult (I know I could not do it), and it could be dangerous cleaning up all the bodily fluids. Instead, the story seems to focus on the condition of Ms. Brown's home. What does that have to do with her career choice?

Melanie Tilley

I really like the way Mr. Klaus gets to the hard hitting questions ["Death's Cleaning Lady," August 2]. The guy has a true gift for turning a good story into a great one. He has incredible penmanship. I look forward to more articles in the near future.

Matt Senvisky

I am in the crime scene cleanup industry ["Death's Cleaning Lady," August 2]. I have been in the death industry for 19 years. I have had many articles and news stories done on me and never have I read such a bad story. The reporter depicted her as being a sick old lady. What does her house have to do with what she does? Did the reporter check with anyone to see if any complaints have been filed? How dare you speak of her "ghostly" appearance. Very bad writing.

Mark Fagala
Fagala Biohazard Specialists
Gastonia, North Carolina

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