A personal story: Terry Greenwood, Daisytown, Pennsylvania

My drinking water went bad in January 2008. It looked like iced tea. When I called the company, they said, “Don’t drink it.”

Telling personal stories
The oil and gas boom has been underway for a number of years in many locations across North America, and many stories have come to light about individuals and families whose lives have been personally affected. This post is part of a regular weekly series of those stories on this blog to help you envision what could happen if drilling expands along the Beartooth Front, and what is possible to keep that from happening.

You can see other personal stories in this series by clicking here. Note that you can find more by clicking “Older Posts” at the bottom of the page.

Terry Greenwood, Daisytown, Pennsylvania

Terry Greenwood, a dairy farmer from Daisytown, Pennsylvania, died on June 8 at age 66 after a three month battle with brain cancer. His motto was, “Water is more important than gas.”

The video above was created by Josh Fox in “2009 or 2010.” (If you get this post via email, click on the title of the post to see it.) Here is how he describes his meetings with Terry:

Some people just manage to bestow a great humanity and great respect onto you while they are talking. Terry was one of those people.

When you listened to Terry you felt like a more generous person somehow, he just made you want to listen, and made you want to help. Honesty, decency, generosity, care, love. These are the words that spring to mind when you listen to Terry….And those damn amazing red white and blue suspenders! You know you are the genuine article if you can get away with those….

I am sure you will hear the tone that I am talking about in his voice. And i hope, it gives you a sense of the man and how much he loved his farm and his life.

Here is Terry’s personal story, published in Shalefield Stories in January, 2014:

Terry GreenwoodI am a small town farmer from Western Pennsylvania. Whether horizontal or vertical wells are drilled, there is destruction and contamination from spills and run-off.

I have lived on this farm since 1988. This property was leased back in 1921. The gas company, Dominion, came to my farm in 2007 and said, “We’re going to drill two wells on your property.” They acted like dictators. They did what they wanted to do. I had no say.

The wellhead was 285 feet from my pond. There was a spill on my property a short time later. The frack fluid went into my field and pond. My animals drank this water. I lost 11 cattle. A two-year-old cow died, 10 calves were stillborn, and 4 were blind (2 had blue eyes and 2 had white eyes).

This affects the animals something terrible. I had to get rid of my bull, because he became sterile. I called the DEP, Pennsylvania’s Departmentof Environmental Protection. Also, we called the gas company. No one helped me.

Terry devoted his last years to speaking out about what had happened to his farm.

Terry devoted his last years to speaking out about what had happened to his farm.

The DEP sided with the gas company when I called them. I was told by the DEP, “There’s nothing wrong with this. They dump the water.” The damage was done.

My drinking water went bad in January 2008. It looked like iced tea. When I called the company, they said, “Don’t drink it.”

The gas company only tested my well that was for drinking water and my spring. They had no interest in testing the water my animals drank or answering as to what chemicals killed my cattle.

They then came and drilled five wells to find a water well, but the water was so salty you couldn’t drink it. However, they refused to supply us with water that we could drink. I have been paying $800 a year for water since.

In my own field, the gas company said, “Get an attorney. Prove it.” They threw garbage on my property and buried frack pits with plastic liners sticking up in places. This is what they do to you.

I lost six acres of hayfield to the roads they built. They came one day, cut the fence and did what they wanted to do. When I hauled their garbage to the road, because I didn’t want them burying it on my property, they accused me of blocking the road with garbage. They have even taken me to court.

I sell cattle for food. My business is bad now since it is not nearly as profitable. This has been hard on us and has caused a lot of stress and pressure. I am losing over $10,000 per year in lost cattle and hayfield. Much more money has been lost than has been collected in royalties from the wells on my farm.

In 2009, a Dominion employee told me, “The wells are drilled. We’re done with you.” These people just ruin your life.

About davidjkatz

The Moses family has lived on the Stillwater River since 1974, when George and Lucile Moses retired and moved to the Beehive from the Twin Cities. They’re gone now, but their four daughters (pictured at left, on the Beehive) and their families continue to spend time there, and have grown to love the area. This blog started as an email chain to keep the family informed about the threat of increased fracking activity in the area, but the desire to inform and get involved led to the creation of this blog.
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1 Response to A personal story: Terry Greenwood, Daisytown, Pennsylvania

  1. Pingback: Article in The Local Rag uses half-truths, lies and plain stupidity to promote oil drilling | Preserve the Beartooth Front

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