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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Postcard photo causes election kerfuffle in Pines

(Aug. 6, 2015) Last week a postcard targeting Ocean Pines nonresidents in the 2015 board of directors election became a subject of debate in the community.
On Tuesday, the Gazette learned that Board Vice President Marty Clarke, who chose to step down rather than run for reelection this cycle, was behind the mailer.
The card included a photograph of the Worcester County Veteran’s Memorial on one side. On the other, a note asked voters to, “Please help us elect the only two fiscal conservative candidates who will help stop the [general manager’s] reckless spending. Vote for [Slobodan] Trendic and [Thomas] Herrick!”
The note was signed, simply, “Your Neighbor Beth.”
Marie Gilmore, president of the Worcester County Veterans Memorial Foundation, addressed the postcard during a public meeting on Thursday.
Gilmore said she forwarded the postcard to the community’s board of directors.
“The Veteran’s Memorial Foundation never has and never will support any candidate running for any public office,” Gilmore said. “Since that letter was sent to you, I have heard that it has grown legs, and I do not like the direction that it’s going.”
Gilmore said the foundation is protective of the memorial, adding, “I sincerely appreciate that they’re backing me 100 percent in my feeling.”
“I don’t want any negative publicity put on the Veteran’s Memorial, therefore I request the letter not be read publically,” Gilmore said.
She added she had lengthy conversations with Trendic and Herrick and labeled the contents of the letter as, “a vitriolic statement against the general manager.”
“There is no reason on God’s green earth why the Ocean Pines memorial should ever be associated with something like that,” Gilmore said. “It distresses me on several levels. It’s like going after one of my kids.
“The Veteran’s memorial has had … a wonderful relationship with Ocean Pines, and an especially wonderful relationship with [General Manager] Bob Thompson … who happens to be a retired veteran who has a deep feeling for the veteran’s memorial,” Gilmore added. “It truly distresses me that the veteran’s memorial would be associated with vitriol.”
Thompson declined to comment. Clarke, however, maintained the card, “had nothing to do with the memorial.”
Clarke has been a public supporter of both candidates.
“I used that picture because it was the best picture I could find in stock,” he said. “It had nothing to do with inferring any way shape or form that [the foundation] endorsed a candidate. I could have used a picture of a wooden duck, but that wouldn’t have meant the wooden duck was supporting Trendic and Herrick.”