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Letter to the Editor
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Monday September 17

DiLisio Says CIC Meeting in Alaska to Proceed as Planned

Dear Ladies and Gentleman of the Collision Repair Industry.

It is with tremendous sadness that I am compelled to write you based on the most recent tragic and despicable acts of terrorism that have struck this country. Let me first offer my most sincere condolences to all those who have lost family and / or friends because of it. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you in these trying times.

In some way, each and every one of us will be affected by these tragic events and we must be strong and unite in order to show our true strength in getting through it all. The United States, is just that and it sometimes takes a tragic crisis such as this to pull people together. As I write this, 3 short days ago, there was a serious shortage of blood, now there is an overabundance, this is just a small example of what the American public can do in times of need.

Since the horrific turn of events on September 11, 2001, I have spoken to many individuals and the conversation is mostly focused on what has happened and how it might affect us in the short and long-term future. One of the issues that has been raised numerous times is the upcoming CIC meeting in Anchorage Alaska, Scheduled for October 3, and 4, 2001. I have talked to several people that have suggested we cancel the meeting, while others have pleaded to continue as planned. In an effort to determine the ramifications of canceling the event, our thoughts went to those that had purchased non-refundable tickets. In addition the hotel was contacted and we were informed that there would be a VERY significant penalty for canceling the meeting. Lastly, those that still plan on attending would also be forced to suffer a loss not of their choosing.

We are not a nation of quitters and while I completely understand and respect the apprehension one might have in traveling and congregating at a meeting, I also feel as though we must continue on. This great country was not built on trepidation and uncertainty, it was built on the will to live and prosper. In that light, we will continue on with our plans to hold the CIC meeting AS SCHEDULED in Anchorage Alaska.

I respectfully ask that you plan to attend this meeting with the sole goal to help strengthen our already strong bonds and work to make our industry a better place as so many who recently lost their lives have done in their own way. In the event you can not make it, we will miss you, but we understand. For those of you that will be there, we will continue to make every effort to make this the best meeting ever, just as we were doing before. The meeting will be held three weeks after the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001. A time for healing and reflection is upon us now. We are a nation that will rise from this event stronger and more determined than ever and the time to start that movement is now.

Once again, in your own way, please take a moment to reflect on those that have either been hurt or lost their lives in this most unbelievable chain of events. It will be with a heavy heart, but for the right reasons - to move forward - that I will look forward to seeing you all in Alaska on October 3 - 4, 2001

Louis DiLisio Jr.

Chairman, Collision Industry Conference

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