Woodstock Tragedy

Aug 28, 2019

To the Editor:

After reading your columns on the 50th-year anniversary of the Woodstock festival in the Aug. 14 edition, I wanted to inform you that not all people have fond memories of this event.

While working Sunday morning 50 years ago in Hamilton Township, Mercer County, I heard on the radio that 17-year-old Ray Mizak had died at the festival. He was my close friend and we routinely would go fishing and exploring in the woods. On hearing the news, and being a 17-year-old, I really did not know what to do, so I contacted a local priest and asked him to call Ray’s parents to verify the tragic situation. The priest called me back with verification. I was heartbroken. He had died while sleeping under a tractor and was crushed when it took off.

Later, Ray’s mother asked me if I wanted the snakes that were in his room. I had to say no, as I had seven other family members and not all of them would be pleased with these new pets. Ray and I would routinely go into the swamps and collect snakes and keep and feed them in his fish tanks. He always kept one in his room.

This is just a thought about the 50th-year anniversary of Woodstock.

David S. Pollack Sr.

Hamilton Township, N.J., and Beach Haven West



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