Why Weirton?

To the Editor,

I grew up about two hours east of Weirton, in Johnstown — also a city where King Steel (and coal) reigned for decades. I now live in Louisiana and will soon retire from a chemical plant. I want to move back to the northeast to be closer to the kids and grandkids — all of whom live in eastern Pennsylvania due to a plethora of jobs and opportunities. I won’t move back to Pennsylvania, however, due to the ridiculous property tax structure that makes affording a home difficult.

Of all the cities in West Virginia we’ve looked into, I thought Weirton had the best fit for a former steelworker. Property values, costs, and taxes are quite affordable, and my wife wants to live in the mountains, and Weirton has them.

Unfortunately, she wants to relocate now to Frostburg, MD. But, I still favor Weirton. Yes, I know about the drug problem (it’s everywhere). Your town has a lot going for it besides the mountains and scenery. A community center with a swimming pool is a definite draw. Also, West Virginia’s tuition-free classes for seniors is a positive, with a nearby community college.

Unfortunately, someone in the Chamber of Commerce asked what was thought to be a legitimate question: “Why in the world are you moving to Weirton?”

That was enough for my wife. So, I’d like to know what Weirton has planned for the future. I’d love to be 45 minutes from the Steelers, Pirates, and Penguins. The airport’s proximity is a major selling point too, but my wife fears Weirton is dying. She is afraid drugs and crime will soar, property values will plummet, and sooner rather than later, Weirton will become the dead zone known as Johnstown, PA.

What can I tell her to help change her mind? Frostburg, MD is definitely our second choice. But, Weirton, I had my eye on you since we began looking. We’ve considered Tennessee and Kentucky (both eight hours from the kids). I’d like to be no farther than five — and that’s Weirton.

So, please help me out. I want to move there, but I need valid reasons to make the argument.

Robert L McClain

Denham Springs, La.