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'First Look': Lois Henry discusses logger's death

Wednesday, Jun 05 2013 11:42 AM

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Jennings Blake Bennett, right, walks through the forest with a logger where his dad, Jennings Bill Bennett, died in a logging accident in the Tehachapi Mountains on Spetember 23, 2011. Photo courtsey of John Hayes.

Californian columnist Lois Henry talked about the "fairly botched rescue attempt" of a logger in Tehachapi during a segment on "First Look with Scott Cox" Wednesday.

She was joined via phone by John Hayes, a retired Kern County Fire Department battalion chief and brother-in-law of Bill Bennett, who died on Sept. 23, 2011, after a tree fell on him while he was working in the mountains south of Tehachapi.

Hayes has been on a quest to get answers from several agencies about their response. Henry wrote about that in her Sunday column.

Hayes said he worked for the county for more than 29 years, and he believes there are a lot of good county workers. But he said answers should be forthcoming, too.

Time limits for a lawsuit by the family have expired, Hayes said.

He called for the departments to "have the courage of your convictions," and said that if they believe nothing went wrong with the response, it should be talked about.

Henry asked Hayes about his next step since his requests for information and reports have been denied.

"I really don't know where to go next," Hayes said. He hopes public opinion will matter, and hopes people will ask their county supervisor about Bennett's death.

"I'm just trying to get people informed." Hayes said.

Before Hayes phoned in, Henry talked with fellow Californian columnist Herb Benham about selecting column topics, including her Wednesday piece on feedback she receives and working with Scott Cox.

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