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Bridge to resettled Burin Peninsula community of Corbin coming down


When the time comes for Joe Dunphy to leave this earth he wants to be buried back in the cemetery in his resettled hometown of Corbin.

“My mother and father (are) there,” he told The Southern Gazette. “My young brother, (who was) four years old when he died, my grandmother and grandfather — the whole works of them are all there.”

The bridge to the community has fallen into disrepair, and with no talk of replacing the aging crossing, Dunphy is concerned he will not get to fulfill his wish.

“This year when I went home, the bridge was on a 45 (degree slope). So is it going to last next winter?” he asked rhetorically.      

He said the crossing is a vital link for families who have loved ones buried in the cemetery.

There are also a number of cabins in the area whose owners rely on the bridge for access.

“Next time I go home … the bridge will probably fall down if it’s not took down,” he said. “Then how in the hell do you get across?”

Dunphy, who now lives in Cambridge, Ont., said he knows the province is in a tight spot financially and that a bridge might not be an affordable option.

“I’d just like to see them put a walkway across there or something,” he explained. “It doesn’t have to be a bridge. I don’t want to drive a car or nothing across … just something to walk across.”

Transportation and Works Minister Al Hawkins could not be reached for comment on the issue. Jacquelyn Howard, the department’s director of communications, however, provided an emailed statement that said there are no plans for a replacement structure.

The bridge has received no upkeep since 2004 when it was announced that Class 4 roads would no longer be maintained, the email said.

Cabin owners were notified at that time of the change and that the Department of Transportation and Works would not be funding a new bridge or a replacement structure.

“Cabin owners have been advised that the bridge is unsafe and presents (a) serious risk of injury if used. Safety signage, guardrails and barricades have been in place since last fall to prevent access,” the statement said.

“Cabin owners have been aware since 2015 that the bridge will be removed due to public safety concerns.”

According to the email from Howard, the department is working to coordinate the demolition of the bridge with the availability of a contractor.

“There are alternate accesses for cabin owners which they can explore with local community groups if they wish,” the statement concluded.

Dunphy said that the memory of the people buried in the community should be respected.

“I suppose there is about a couple hundred people buried up there, and my God, they would give their shirt you know when they were alive and living down there,” Dunphy said.

“I just thought that the government should be responsible because cemeteries are very important no matter where they are because we all ends up there. I just thought it was ridiculous to let the bridge go — to let it go so bad as that.

“I just find it kind of sad you know.”

colin.farrell@tc.tc

@Colin_TCMedia

“My mother and father (are) there,” he told The Southern Gazette. “My young brother, (who was) four years old when he died, my grandmother and grandfather — the whole works of them are all there.”

The bridge to the community has fallen into disrepair, and with no talk of replacing the aging crossing, Dunphy is concerned he will not get to fulfill his wish.

“This year when I went home, the bridge was on a 45 (degree slope). So is it going to last next winter?” he asked rhetorically.      

He said the crossing is a vital link for families who have loved ones buried in the cemetery.

There are also a number of cabins in the area whose owners rely on the bridge for access.

“Next time I go home … the bridge will probably fall down if it’s not took down,” he said. “Then how in the hell do you get across?”

Dunphy, who now lives in Cambridge, Ont., said he knows the province is in a tight spot financially and that a bridge might not be an affordable option.

“I’d just like to see them put a walkway across there or something,” he explained. “It doesn’t have to be a bridge. I don’t want to drive a car or nothing across … just something to walk across.”

Transportation and Works Minister Al Hawkins could not be reached for comment on the issue. Jacquelyn Howard, the department’s director of communications, however, provided an emailed statement that said there are no plans for a replacement structure.

The bridge has received no upkeep since 2004 when it was announced that Class 4 roads would no longer be maintained, the email said.

Cabin owners were notified at that time of the change and that the Department of Transportation and Works would not be funding a new bridge or a replacement structure.

“Cabin owners have been advised that the bridge is unsafe and presents (a) serious risk of injury if used. Safety signage, guardrails and barricades have been in place since last fall to prevent access,” the statement said.

“Cabin owners have been aware since 2015 that the bridge will be removed due to public safety concerns.”

According to the email from Howard, the department is working to coordinate the demolition of the bridge with the availability of a contractor.

“There are alternate accesses for cabin owners which they can explore with local community groups if they wish,” the statement concluded.

Dunphy said that the memory of the people buried in the community should be respected.

“I suppose there is about a couple hundred people buried up there, and my God, they would give their shirt you know when they were alive and living down there,” Dunphy said.

“I just thought that the government should be responsible because cemeteries are very important no matter where they are because we all ends up there. I just thought it was ridiculous to let the bridge go — to let it go so bad as that.

“I just find it kind of sad you know.”

colin.farrell@tc.tc

@Colin_TCMedia

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