November 5, 1993

Dear Ken,

I heard several weeks ago about your illness, and just wanted to drop you a note to let you know that my thoughts are with you. I've thought several times of calling, but worry that I might get you at a time when you're feeling worn out from the effects of the treatments. Please know that I and many other people whose lives you've influenced over the years are pulling hard for you -- I hope that the power of the positive thoughts and hopes for you that are shared by so many of us will help you to fight back and get well.

Also, you should know that several of us (at present myself, Jim Thompson, Stan Albrecht, and Steve Murdock) are beginning to work toward developing a proposal to initiate a re-study of a number of the western energy boom towns. After nearly 10 years, it seems that an examination of the long-term, post-boom effects on community and social well-being in such places is very timely. From the very beginning of our discussions about pursuing this project, all of us have planned on asking you to become involved as a member of the study group. While your attentions are focused on getting well, we will proceed with preliminary planning, but please know that we are holding a slot open for your involvement whenever you feel ready to jump in.

From a distance of 2,000 miles away, I'm not sure if there are ways that I might be of any help to you in taking on some tasks or other responsibilities that are difficult for you to attend to for the time being. If there is anything that I could do, please let me know. Your support and friendship over the years have meant a great deal to me, and I'd be happy to do anything possible to help you focus your attention entirely on healing yourself.

I hope to see you soon, and that you will be well on the road to recovery by then.

Best Wishes, Rick

(Utah State University, Institute for Social Science Research on Natural Resources)