I agree with what Mary Sheppard said in her Sept. 5 letter to the editor. Michael Gallen's presence on the Manatee County commission will be sorely missed.
It was evident that he thoroughly studied all of the issues coming before the board and always voted for what was always the best for the community. Because he was energetic, tenacious and knowledgeable, he was able to get many things done for District 2 that had been lacking for many years.
I have talked to community leaders who agree with me that he was one of the most effective commissioners from District 2 ever to sit on that board.
Commissioner Gallen had the support of many Republicans as well as Democrats, and if the election had been "open" and not closed to all voters, he would have easily won.
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Charles Smith has some very big shoes to fill.
Mary Gail Byrd