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 Posted: Thu Oct 22nd, 2009 12:16 pm
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javal1
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As of Monday, John Latschar will no longer be the superintendent of Gettysburg National Military Park.

Following the leak of a federal document that said he spent time at work searching for and viewing sexually explicit material, the 15-year steward of the Gettysburg Battlefield has been reassigned to a desk job within the National Park Service.

“Strangely enough, right now, in addition to the sorrow for the grief I’ve caused friends and family, I’m feeling almost a sense of relief,” Latschar said when contacted Wednesday night. “I’ve spent the last 21 years of my life in the public arena, where everything I say or do is considered fair game.

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 Posted: Thu Oct 22nd, 2009 02:35 pm
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ole
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Sounds like the guy (didn't say "man" intentionally) has made enemies during his tenure.

Ole



 Posted: Thu Oct 22nd, 2009 02:58 pm
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javal1
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Depends who you talk to. What some see as "determined", others see as arrogance. I have serious problems with the whole Gettysburg Foundation and having been lied to by Latscher about the scope and cost of the VC.

But I have to say, once the word Bestiality is mentioned in a newspaper article, it wouldn't have mattered if Mother Theresa held the job. The result would be the same.



 Posted: Thu Oct 22nd, 2009 11:11 pm
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barrydancer
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He was to have led a tour for our Longstreet Society seminar this year. Wonder who'll we'll get as a replacement...



 Posted: Thu Oct 22nd, 2009 11:33 pm
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ole
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Gotta admit I know only as much about the man as has been posted on the boards. What I've seen, I don't like, but it's not the same as thoroughly understanding what's been going on. Judgement reserved.

Ole



 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 12:34 am
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pamc153PA
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Well, I've heard some things through LBG friends that I was not impressed with, to say the least, but they were all regarding the park and park personnel. If true, these new revelations are worse than that. . .anyway, how'd he have the computer time to amass such a "collection" if he was doing his job??

Can't say I'll be sorry to see him go. . .would kind of be nice to have a woman in that position, for a change of pace.

Pam



 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 12:54 am
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javal1
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Actually Pam, they have a great woman there who has been in charge of PR/Communications by the name of Katie Lawhon. Hell, she probably knows more about policies than Latschar did (much the same way nurses often know more than doctors and secretary's know more than their boss). Very capable, but the way the NPS promotion system works...well, I still haven't figured it out.



 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 01:00 am
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19bama46
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Whether on not you like him, and I don't know him,,, whether or not you like what he has done regarding the VC and I don't much care for it, the fact remains that all this is coming about because someone leaked a report that should have been kept confidential as a personnel document and a personnel problem. We now will never know what would have happened thru channels in the form of "punishment" for his crime... Is this the way justice is dispensed in this country now?



 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 01:55 am
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maccars
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Seems like a miserable way for the man to "leave the field", so to speak. I haven't been a fan of Latscher or his policies, but I never felt like he didn't have the Park's best interest at heart.

Still, this will be a loss for the cause of preservation of historic places and artifacts. Whoever said that this was a sad day for Gettysburg was spot on.



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 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 05:41 am
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Basecat
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Joe,

The whole fiasco about the GB Foundation has bothered me from Day 1, and you used the correct word.  He "lied" and then when word came out he was gonna leave to take over the foundation should have brought a quicker Red Flag than it did.

Good riddance, and am glad this sad chapter is finally over. 

Hope all is well.

Steve



 Posted: Tue Oct 27th, 2009 11:31 pm
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TimK
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I've found this whole thing pretty upsetting. It is obvious that Dr. Latschar has made plenty of enemies, and more seem to be crawling out of the woodwork. Too bad. But from 2 time zones away from Gettysburg, this is what I see.

I see people that hate the new visitor center. But anybody that saw the Cyclorama five years ago to the way it looks now must certainly appreciate the improvement. I'm sure there had to be politics involved to make this happen. Anybody that tried to maneuver through the old VC when there were busloads of school kids or Boy Scouts or tour groups must appreciate the fact that it is now possible to matriculate through the new VC on busy days. It was very crowded when I was there, and I had no trouble getting around. Has anybody been to the computer/research room in the new VC to find a monument? I've never had to wait for a computer to do some research. I couldn't find a place to study in the old VC.

It can cost me $300 for air fare, $75-$100 a night for a hotel, another $200-$300 for a car when I travel to Gettysburg. Whatever the price to get into the Museum/Movie/Cyclorama is okay with me. I'm good with it. Anybody know how much it costs to get into Rocky Mountain, Yellowstone, or Grand Canyon National Parks? Gettysburg is a bargain, and you don't even need to pay to get into the park itself.

I can't deny that there were some shady issues, and no doubt he should have used his personal computer for his personal amusement. But in MY OPINION, visiting Gettysburg has been made better under his watch.



 Posted: Wed Oct 28th, 2009 11:46 am
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Margaret B.
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I would respectfully disagree with the use of the term, "lie" in terms of the Foundation.  Certainly there were changes, particularly in terms of costs, over the life of the project. That's not exactly unknown at the start of a major construction or renovation project:  Decisions are made on scope, prices rise, a geothermal HVAC system was chosen (greener and believed to be less expensive in the long run but priciet at the outset.), the Foundation accepted on additional responsibilities.  I don't think there was any reasonable basis for anyone to accurately estimate  the costs of the painting restoration. 

The  Foundation and the costs are aspects of this that have been the most thoroughly vetted with the results published, including Congressional oversight subcommittee hearings and the recent OIG report.  Of course, not everyone will agree with the choices made or even agree with the explanations nor should they have to do so.  It's just, IMHO, using the term "lie" is inaccurate. 

Personally, I admire and respect the man and his work. Nothing has changed that since I don't expect perfection from people. However,  regardless of one's feelings about John Latschar the person, there is what has been accomplished at GNMP under his leadership. I started coming to Gettysburg at the very beginning of John Latschar's tenure and I will keep coming unless and until I can no longer physically do so, now that he's gone.  I'm financially stable enough but by no means wealthy and coming up on retirement,  but there is no amount of money in the world that I'd accept if it meant going back to the state of GNMP as it was when he came.  Generations of visitors will appreciate what his leadership has accomplished, long after he's become another past chapter in the park's history.



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