LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Buckson deserves to be remembered in Delaware

Eric Buckson did his family proud at the Feb. 6 celebration of his father, David’s, life at Dover Downs.

Eric, a Kent County [Levy Court] Commissioner, emceed the event that drew more than 200 people from across the state to remember and pay tribute to a man who played many roles in Kent County and beyond: veteran, judge, entrepreneur, horseman, lieutenant governor and governor.

The fourth-floor Diamond Room was a fitting place for the uplifting gathering. It overlooks the horse racing track where David raced into his 70s and where his ashes were spread at the end of the event.

His involvement and initiative in bringing Dover Downs into existence in 1968 is well documented. Tributes were paid and stories shared by well-known and ordinary folks affected by a leader whom more than one affectionately described as a “character,” who loved Sinatra’s “My Way.”

As a young Dover Air Force Base airman, I remember watching a steamroller tethered to a crane as it rolled asphalt onto the 30-degree turn of the Monster Mile. It was the same year the Blue Hen Mall opened as the first enclosed mall in the area. Those events were an historic exclamation point to central Delaware development. The mall is no more, but Dover Downs continues to prosper as a major attraction, economic generator and community supporter.

During the past decade, we at Kent County Chapter 850, Vietnam Veterans of America, were always honored when Gov. Buckson, a proud World War II veteran, could join us at our ceremonies at the Kent County Memorial Park or ride in a parade in his uniform with Eric at his side providing physical and emotional support.

But veterans are particularly grateful to his widow, Pat, and the Buckson family for thinking about the state’s veterans in asking that contributions in her husband’s memory be made to the Delaware Veterans Trust Fund.

We can only trust that county and state governments will attach David Buckson’s name to an appropriate structure that reflects his many accomplishments in the First State.

Dave Skocik
President, Friends of Delaware Veterans

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