On Dec. 17 my wife and I were walking north on East Bay Street approaching Hasell Street. As I admired a beautiful home across the street, I stepped in a rectangular bricked area that contained sand and the stump of a dead palm tree.

The sudden drop of my left foot caused me to lose my balance, trip over the stump, and fall face first into busy East Bay Street.

I injured my ribs, shoulder, chin, knees, hands, and damaged my glasses. Had the traffic light changed sooner, I could easily have been struck by a car or truck and killed.

Thanks to the stranger who helped me up, the receptionist at nearby Ansonborough Hotel who helped bandage my cuts, and Jackson Davenport Vision Center who helped repair my glasses.

The accident was the direct result of a walking hazard created by poor sidewalk maintenance by the city of Charleston, a city that thrives on tourism and foot traffic. My injuries not only ruined an otherwise beautiful visit to the city of my first job as a 2nd lieutenant at Charleston Air Force Base and our first home 45 years ago; but the resultant continuing pain has definitely put a damper on our holiday season. Charleston can and should do better.

Larry McCourry

Col., U.S. Air Force, (Ret.)

Chanticleer Drive

Leesburg, Fla.