Daily Archives: August 27, 2010

‘Who wouldn’t want to own a lighthouse in Maine?’ | Portland Press Herald

 Bidders drawn by the charm, desire to preserve Ram Island Ledge Light take a closer look at Casco Bay lighthouse

 CASCO BAY – From his home in Cape Elizabeth, Scott Raspa can see Ram Island Ledge Light taking a pounding during nor’easters, or standing sentinel in calmer seas

On Thursday, the software consultant joined others on a Coast Guard vessel for a closer view of the lighthouse, about a mile northeast of Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth. The visitors were registered bidders in a federal government auction of the five-story tower, which has helped mark the main channel to Portland Harbor since 1905.

Conserving the lighthouse was a common motive among the bidders. A couple of them also thought ownership of the lighthouse could dovetail with their business plans. One had a notion that it could serve as a bed and breakfast for adventurous types, but wasn’t yet certain what he would do. All seemed charmed by the prospect of owning a wind-swept lighthouse off Maine’s rocky coast.

The Coast Guard doesn’t have the budget to maintain all of the lighthouse towers that house navigational aids, which in this case consists of a light and a foghorn. Under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act of 2000, lighthouses are offered to groups such as local governments and nonprofits at no cost before being put up for auction. The Coast Guard continues to maintain the navigational aids in lighthouse towers that are sold.

Raspa likes the idea of being the owner of a nearby lighthouse, with all its mystery and history. He doesn’t yet have a concrete plan should that become the case.

“We were thinking about having cocktail parties there. I don’t know if that’s possible,” he said.

Click for the rest of the story by Ann S. Kim in the Portland Press Herald.

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Amity slayings: A son’s questions, a mother’s anguish | Bangor Daily News

AMITY, Maine — A little more than two months after his father and half-brother were stabbed to death inside their home during a brutal triple slaying, Shannon Ryan’s mind keeps wandering.

What time did his father, Jeffrey Ryan, 55, his half-brother Jesse, 10, and close family friend Jason Dehahn really die? Was there someone else involved in the crime besides 20-year-old Thayne Ormsby, who has been charged with three counts of murder? And most of all, he wonders, why hasn’t the man who admitted helping Ormsby conceal evidence of the crimes been arrested?

“Why in the world hasn’t he been charged or arrested?” the 35-year-old Ryan asked during a phone interview Wednesday from his home in Texas. “I think that question boggles the mind of everyone up in that area and probably in the state.”

Jamie Merrill, Jeffrey Ryan’s ex-wife and the dead boy’s mother, is having the same thoughts and feelings, she said Wednesday.

“There is no way that that 20-year-old got it in his mind to kill these people alone,” she said from her home in Lewiston. “We know that he did not get rid of evidence of the crime alone. The police have said that. And I think this was planned beforehand and Ormsby didn’t act alone.”

Click for the rest of the story by Jen Lynds in the Bangor Daily News.