Tuesday, November 22, 2005

The new Coroner

Doctors and undertakers are lining up to take the place of the late Dr. George Huddock as Luzerne County Coroner. The Time-Leader lists five candidates who have expressed interest in the job:

On the Democratic side, retired surgeon Peter Casterline and funeral director James Desiderio say they've expressed interest to party leaders and officials. Party leaders say funeral director John Corcoran, a Democrat, has also applied, although he has not responded to several requests seeking comment. Republicans James A. Petrilli, also a funeral director, and Dr. Dennis Gaza, a retired internist, have sent resumes to various state officials, too.

This is one job that should have absolutely nothing to do with politics and should be filled by the most qualified applicant but that's not the way it works. In another county I have lived in the coroner was a Podiatrist who succeeded a photography shop owner. We were very lucky to have Dr. Huddock as our coroner for so long, he was a trained pathologist and dedicated man. He saved the the county an enormous amount of money by doing his own autopsies and testifying in court. I remember having lunch with him a while back and he was talking shop, which was quite an experience. He explained to us how he had identified someone by rebuilding their face. The details were fascinating and he told the story in a way that didn't gross you out. He will be missed.

Gov. Ed Rendell has until the end of the year to submit a recommendation to the state Senate. His spokesman said people should not presume that Hudock will be replaced with another Democrat.

"The governor doesn't consider party affiliation. He considers qualifications and a candidate's ability to be confirmed."

We all believe that one.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

We need a qualified Pathologist; plain and simple. Republican, Democrat, Martian, don't matter--but a Pathologist.