On August 15th of this year, I disclosed in another thread  SOS Lifeguards   that I was getting the police report regarding the drowning death of Anthony Goldsmith exactly one year previous, due to a variety of viewpoints about the causal effects.  I believe that what happened with Anthony Goldsmith is the reason that lifeguards should be brought back to Ludington's Stearn Beach, and yet an unconvinced minority maintained that lifeguards in the same scenario would not have helped or would have drowned themselves.


BACKGROUND:   The Ludington Daily News (LDN) originally reported that Anthony was swimming with his son when he got caught up in the rip tides and drowned.  The Kalamazoo Gazette reported a more in-depth report of he and his son swimming out into the water to rescue two other people.  12-31-2010, LDN:  A 44-year-old Lawton man drowned in rough water at Stearns Park Aug. 15. A southwestern Michigan newspaper reported Anthony Goldsmith was attempting to help another swimmer in distress when he got into trouble.   Mlive/Kalamazoo 8-16-2010  

Pundits, some who claim they were there, some who claim up and down that lifeguards wouldn't have made a difference, and some who said they would have made all the difference made their points in the comments, but there was never a solid narrative of what actually happened except in that Kalamazoo paper.  Here are three statements and more, of people that were there that day and saw some or all of what happened. 


STATEMENT 1:  Ryan Goldsmith

In the K-zoo report, Ryan's brother related Ryan had said they tried to save two people in distress, yet only one is mentioned here.  Other than that it is fairly consistent with it.  The police report also says that Anthony's wife, mother and father were on the breakwall when it occurred, but they did not have anything to add to Ryan's version of events in their brief statement.


STATEMENT 2:  Audrey Schweikle

Audrey's statement does not mention any other swimmer in the area, and runs counter to some other parts of Ryan's story.  On arrival, a man named Ronnie Whittle said "He's gone, Man." to the r/o and said that he (Anthony) was sucked under at one point after a struggle and never came back up.  Not a statement, per se, but backs Audrey up a little.


STATEMENT 3:  Justin Sadler

Justin again seems to debunk Ryan's assertion of the Goldsmith's being out in the water to save others.  From both her and Audrey's account, they may have both missed this part since neither has a narrative that starts until the calls for help are made.  There is a difference in distance of 30 ft. (from the buoys) in their accounts of where they saw the victim. 


Here's a possible interpretation of what went on that day if we are to assume that each statement made were factual.  Anthony, his wife Sue (who mentions she was on the breakwall when it happened) and their son Ryan were on the breakwall when they heard and saw swimmers in distress over by the south buoys.  Anthony and Ryan swam out in the rough current, taking a little while to get there.  One of the swimmers in trouble managed to get to shore, but the Goldsmiths got to the other and were helping that person back to the breakwall.  But somewhere Anthony tired out, and Ryan and the other (X) got to a 'safe' area before they figured it out.  As 'X' got to the breakwall and dropped out of the picture, Anthony and Ryan began earnestly crying for help.  That's when Audrey, then Justin, came on the scene, as Justin's account has him closer to the swimming buoys.


But Justin's statement should be instructive as to why lifeguards properly equipped and trained would have made this a likely save.  Even though Justin was a late arrival, he was able to go further down the beach, get a kayak to use as a flotation/rescue device and bring it into action in a valiant effort.   A lifeguard would have reacted minutes before, and would have two others to help back him up, and make Anthony and his son not have to enter the water.

The sheer effort of trying to assist in a rescue and fight the current was more than Anthony's 44 year old body could manage that day.  Three lifeguards on duty converging in that area would have made all the difference.

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I don't think he has a problem with a WSP.


The problem (as i assume to be X's view-correct me if I am wrong)


#1 A LOT can be issued for any reason a person makes up, real or perceived. Someone needs to validate the reason for an LOT, A report should have to be filed with the city police with what the accused did and be judged a true threat or whatever by someone(a judge?).


It is easy to say someone makes me feel threatened, but I should not be able to issue a LOT from a city/county property because of my feeling. There needs to be facts, that are approved and reviewed by someone.

#2. The LOT should state who is  making the claim and why the claim is being made(police report). If it is not worth reporting to police is it worth an LOT?


#3 A LOT has to be able to be appealed. Each side needs to be able to "make their case".


It's rather simple really, there needs to be rights on BOTH sides. And a way to resolve the issue, not just one city official making all decisions.




#1 Agree

#2 Agree

#3 Agree



You agree with three reasons why the WSP is bad policy, yet do not regret your vote on it

You do understand that you are part of the City Council--

you do understand that it is a legislative body that makes and enacts laws--

you do understand that if those laws go against existing Federal, State, and even other Local laws, you set the City and all of its taxpayers up to pay a hefty lawsuit, due to the negligence of you and your cohorts.--

you do understand that its been nearly one half of a year since Tom Rotta received this blatant violation of his rights one day after you passed the policy which you have just pointed out is flawed.


Very good points Lando

Who can disagree with Lando or Edie and their cogent points? 

Wow everyone needs to relax. 

All businesses need a WSP - so I can understand why Wanda doesn't regret voting for it. She has agreed there are some flaws. At the time of the vote maybe she and the other councilors didn't immediately see the flaws. Now that they have been pointed out, let's see if the issues are addressed.

And lest we forget what this thread was originally about...

We definitely can say that without lifeguards, Anthony Goldsmith died last year.

If there were lifeguards, three things could have happened

1AG and his son would have noted the swimmers in distress after or about the same time the lifeguards did.  They decide not to enter the water as the lifeguards converge on the swimmers.  AG lives 100% of the time.

2)  As above, but the Goldsmiths also enter the water.  The lifeguards arrive at about the same time as the Goldsmiths, AG gets into distress, one or more lifeguards with flotation devices help out.  AG lives most every time.

3)  The lifeguards corral and manage the swimmers to swim in the safe areas and note the dangers of rip currentsAG and son never need to jump off the breakwall as an "emergency rescue" team.  AG lives 100%.


REMINDER:  AG is 100% dead

And what do you do over this winter, Ms. MarrisonWring your hands of guilt with $40,000 worth of signs, life rings, and bored Rangers whose reaction to an incident like the Goldsmith drowning would be to call 9-1-1 and wait the 5-15 minutes for them when each second is a tick tock away from death.

Well said both Lando and Edie, you both truly understand the situation. It's not exactly rocket science, like the CC seems to think. And since when does an out of town City Attorney need to make any influence or decision, one way or the other on such a matter locally?.........obviously, his duty was to find a flimsy excuse to find an alternative to Lifeguards, as this is what Shay and Henderson wanted and ordered, period.

Nothing more needs to be said than that Wanda, Les Johnson, and 5 others swore an oath when they became a city councilor: 

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the constitution of this state, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of City Councilor of Ludington according to the best of my ability."

They threw both Constitutions in the crapper after wiping their Shay with them when they agreed to the WSP as written.  Take your damn Oath of Office seriously, and create a Workplace Safety Policy for your personal safety, not for your political safety at the expense of everyone's rights.

The whole WSP matter was an overreaction, nervous nelly, knee-jerk reaction to Ms. Heather of the DDA, period. I do guess she carries alot of clout down there to get this silly motion made, approved, and then passed by people that didn't even take time to read the ordinance/policy in advance. Appears when she cries wolf, people run and hastily react. Wonder where such clout comes from? Either way, it truly lacked any merit imho.
The fortunes of Venzke, Shay, Henderson, Barnett, etc. are as interlinked as their alliances with each other are.  Don't be surprised if more than one cried wolf to stop the intrusion on their feelings on 'public record privacy'. 
While a WSP in a workplace isn't strange, the way this particular one was instituted certainly was. I guess when Venzke bats her big fake eyelashes and bleached hair at the men folks at city hall, they drop trow and pant for her attention and do her warped bidding immediately. Rather than analyze the situation like adults in positions of trust.


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