To the Editor:
An early morning event of Friday, April 20, 2012, will be remembered by few others than Ryan Ferns, his family, and his friends, for a lifetime. Ryan admitted openly his "poor judgment" and took full responsibility for his actions.
I cannot and will not defend Ryan's admitted poor judgment with this one unfortunate event ... but Ryan does not fit the profile of a "bad boy" repeat offender, and this event is his first DUI offense to the best of my knowledge.
Ryan has stated clearly "without question that this type of conduct will never happen again," and based on his past promises and actions to which I have been exposed, I believe Ryan without question.
I have had the privilege to get to know and work with Ryan over the past year. Over this past year when Ryan's name has come up in conversations with people that have known him for years, it has repeatedly turned into an unsolicited testimonial about his unusually exceptionally impressive 29-plus years in all areas of his life.
Ryan seems to have walked the very straight and narrow path of a model citizen that most of us should envy and aspire to attain in our remaining days.
I have witnessed Ryan stand strong against the political leadership in Charleston, based on his knowledge of many given issues, and his core beliefs. If you haven't been paying attention, this is not the political norm in Charleston.
I am recommending the following based on the facts about Ryan with which I have been exposed:
Gov. Tomblin should not accept Ryan's resignation from his current West Virginia House seat (contact Gov. Tomblin and encourage this action).
The local Democrat committee should not accept Ryan's withdrawal from his candidacy to be re-elected to his current West Virginia House seat and endorse him. Ccontact your local Democrat committee members and encourage this action.
The constituents/voters of the West Virginia House of Delegates 3rd District should vote for Ryan since his name will remain on the current primary ballot.
The constituents/voters of the West Virginia House of Delegates 3rd District should vote for Ryan (or write-in "Ryan Ferns") on the Nov. 6 general election ballot.
For the benefit of the citizens of West Virginia I hope that all of the above results in overwhelming support for Ryan and the great work as a representative that his record proves he has done selflessly for our state.
For Ryan's sake, I would not blame him for maintaining his retreat from public service, in this sometimes quick-to-judge public arena.
The public'sreaction, in general with few exceptions, to the events surrounding this issue illuminates why many of our best and brightest refuse to serve in public office. I fear that we have just lost another one of our best and brightest, that has demonstrated the potential for growing into being a "true leader," not just another "politician," who would have continued to work for us and our well being for years to come. Ryan Ferns does not need public office - the citizens of West Virginia need Ryan Ferns!
Thank you, Ryan, for the great things you have accomplished in such a short time in public office, and for your selfless public service.