Line­man at­tacked with drink for not restor­ing power

The Covington News - - FRONT PAGE - JACKIE GUTKNECHT jgutknecht@cov­news.com

Fo­cused on restor­ing power to the res­i­dents of the City of Covington, a line­man pulled into Taco Bell Wed­nes­day evening for his a quick bite to eat when he was met with a sur­prise en­counter in the park­ing lot.

Covington City Man­ager Leigh Anne Knight said the line­man was re­turn­ing to his truck with his food when an un­known fe­male ap­proached him. That fe­male threw a soft drink in this line­man’s face and told him “he shouldn’t be eat­ing be­cause her power was still out,” Knight said.

“Our so­ci­ety has be­come so self-cen­tered and de­mand­ing that we can’t see any­thing but what we want and think we de­serve,” Knight said in a post on her per­sonal Face­book page. “I re­al­ize ev­ery­one wants their power back on be­cause as long as most of us have been alive we have not had to worry about read­ing by can­dle­light or build­ing a fire to cook on or stay warm by, but does that mean we can’t live with­out it for a few days?

“Is it an in­con­ve­nience? Why yes. Does it make it harder to do the nor­mal every­day task? Again yes. But can we ac­tu­ally sur­vive for a few days. I am sure we can.

“That is part of our prob­lem. We have things too easy in most cases and be­come so de­pen­dent on things we of­ten for­get that things can change in just a mo­ment. We also for­get that the things we need and use on a daily ba­sis don’t just float down from above. Some­one has to get up ev­ery day, even in a storm, go to work and make sure that what you need to make it through the day is avail­able for you.

“So, again I ask what did you re­ally hope to ac­com­plish with your ran­dom act of mean­ness? That per­son as spent the last three days work­ing more than 16 hours a day (keep in mind there is only 24 in a day, that only leaves eight which is used to drive to and from work and sleep) to do his best to re­con­nect power to the over 2,000 cus­tomers that have been with­out power.

“He more than likely hasn’t seen his chil­dren in those three days and prob­a­bly only briefly his wife.

While you feel slighted and that you de­serve to have every­thing im­me­di­ately, he has been will­ingly show­ing up for long hours, do­ing dif­fi­cult work and try­ing to be of ser­vice to you and the com­mu­nity.

“I am truly ap­palled at how any­one can do such an act of mean­ness. You can’t see oth­ers for hu­man be­ings and the work they do be­cause you are so self-con­sumed!”

The line­man, who’s worked for the City of Covington for more than 10 years, did not know the fe­male and the city has no way of de­ter­min­ing who she was.

Covington Po­lice Depart­ment (CPD) Chief Stacey Cot­ton said CPD was un­able to ob­tain video of the in­ci­dent so there is no on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

“It broke my heart,” Knight said

did not ask for the name of the line­man, nor will it re­lease that in­for­ma­tion, to pro­tect his pri­vacy.

Dar­ryl Welch | The Covington News

City of Covington line­man work on restor­ing power in the af­ter­math of Trop­i­cal Storm Irma.

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