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Originally published: 2014-06-16 11:35:35
Last modified: 2014-06-16 11:36:19

Our View: From tragedy ...

Living in the aftermath of tragedy, especially one which involves not one, but three deaths, often leads to a singular question: Why?

This was certainly the question a year ago this month after it was learned that a single hotel room in Boone was the scene of three deaths, including that of an 11-year-old boy, on two different occasions.

And this is certainly the question today, although that "why" has evolved from "what happened" -- we now know that carbon monoxide was the culprit -- to "why did it happen?"

The answer to that second question is fleeting and beyond our ability to know for certain, but what we can be assured of is that, as is the case in many tragedies, some good can and does arise from horrific circumstances.

Because of the deaths of Jeffrey Williams, and Daryl and Shirley Jenkins, statewide changes have been made, with more stringent regulations yet possible, to the requirements for CO detectors in lodging facilities.

Because of their deaths, statewide steps are in play to improve the medical examiner system and the expedition of toxicology results.

Because of this tragedy, our local fire department has dramatically improved its ability to detect carbon monoxide through equipment and training.

And because of what happened in April and June 2013, a community, a state and a nation are now more aware of the dangers of CO and the need for precaution.

Yes, that we had to learn these things through three deaths and the ongoing struggle the surviving members of their families face has reached the very heart of the Boone community. But today, as we look to the past to remember, we also look ahead to prevent such tragedy in the future.