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Setting Record Straight on Creans

February 27, 1988

It was almost embarrassing--and painful--to read the naive and shallow letters written about the Creans and the Crean mansion/demolition party (LIFE, Feb. 6 letters). The self-righteousness of those letter writers made me sad. How unfair and short-sighted of them.

Donna and John Crean have given more time and money to our homeless, our suffering, our sick, our children, our churches and our lives than any of us will ever know. They give more money to Orange County charities than all of us collectively will probably see in several lifetimes. And they do it quietly and without any fanfare.

I'd like to see what the "stone-throwers" have actually DONE to help the homeless and the poor they talk about. I suspect (they) just write letters using such words as "vapid" and "vulgar" and "shallow." Those words do not apply to the Creans. Patricia Adams of Westminster even said the Creans were "devoid of social conscience." How absolutely wrong. It would be funny if it weren't so sophomoric.

Egocentric? Callous? Hardly! Maybe it's time the "writers of letters" got outside their own petty little jealousies and took a closer look at our "affluent Orange County"--and looked at the museums, the gardens, the churches, the charities, the shelters, the individuals who are helped anonymously through calamities, the services for the elderly, the arts, the rehabilitation centers, the restored historical buildings, the recreation facilities . . . and then asked themselves, "Gee, I wonder who donates the money that makes this possible for ALL of us to enjoy and to live a little better?" The name Crean would come to mind--if they only knew.

So the Creans are building a big home for themselves. And having some fun. Big deal. I hope they enjoy it.

M.A. BARNES

Laguna Beach

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