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Stalemate over Mukai farmhouse has gone on long enough | Letter to the Editor
I wonder how long Island Landmarks board members J. Nelson Happy and Mary Matthews are going to keep moving chess pieces around in order to avoid giving up their puzzling hold on the Mukai property. For those interested in getting a fuller picture of the prolonged stalemate, go to the search function at vashonbeachcomber.com and type in “Mukai farmhouse.”
A quick review on my part brought up dozens of records from over the years, detailing the many attempts to rectify a situation gone bad. In 2008, for example, there is this: “Now, eight years after its purchase, the Mukai Farm is, in the words of Mary Thompson, the state’s former preservation officer, ‘moldering away.’”
That was almost five years ago. For 12-plus years Matthews and Happy have held on — through good-hearted attempts and frustrated attempts and threats of foreclosure and offers to purchase — and who can figure out why? After the most recent attempt by Friends of Mukai, a nonprofit that now has 150 Vashon members, Texas residents Happy and Matthews publicly bemoaned the lack of support they’ve had, then fenced off the property, eliminated the membership option in the original Island Landmarks organization and cut the size of their board from five to three.
And now Happy is suing three members of Friends of Mukai, and calling the rest “a dissident group.”
Who are the real dissidents here? Free Mukai!
— Rondi Lightmark