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Delegate apologizes for remark about Morgan

October 13, 2003|by TAMELA BAKER

tammyb@herald-mail.com

A member of the Washington County Delegation to the Maryland General Assembly apologized for a remark likening an action by the county schools superintendent to "something (Adolf) Hitler would do."

Del. LeRoy Myers, R-Washington/Allegany, said he was attending a baseball game last May when he was approached by some educators who told him Washington County Superintendent of Schools Elizabeth Morgan had abruptly fired an employee and had her escorted out by police.

"And I said, 'Oh, gee whiz, that sounds like something Hitler would do.' And that was it," Myers said. "I run a business myself, and I understand if somebody needs to be fired, but I couldn't imagine escorting somebody out."

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Shortly after school started this year, Myers got a call from a friend on the School Board who said there was a tale going around that Myers had referred to Morgan as a Nazi.

"I immediately called Dr. Morgan and told her what happened, and I apologized and said, 'Will you forgive me?'" Myers said.

Morgan then explained why the employee had been dismissed, Myers said.

"And I did find out that there weren't any police, but the woman dug in her heels and wouldn't leave," Myers said. "So Dr. Morgan asked an assistant to see if she needed some assistance to leave."

Myers said he apologized to Morgan more than a month ago.

His remark was not directed at Morgan personally, but was a comment on her action toward the other employee as it was reported to him, Myers said.

"This is kind of unfortunate for everybody," he said.

He added that he and Morgan had concluded that the educators who reported the incident to him were "a group of individuals who didn't like change."

Myers said he supports the changes Morgan has made so far.

For her part, Morgan said the matter is over.

"I was really hoping that it could just die, as it should," Morgan said Friday. "He did call me and apologize. I think he did the right thing by apologizing. As far as I'm concerned, it's a dead issue; that's basically how I feel at this point.

"I accept the fact, and I think all my colleagues accept, that you're going to be criticized On any given day, somebody's going to be unhappy with the decisions you have to make."

"I think maybe Del. Myers might have been approached by a disgruntled employee," she said. "We have had a few conversations since then, and both of us intend to work together for Washington County students."

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