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News Release
For Immediate Release


Live on the Internet!  The Death of a Forest

Downers Grove, IL  
July 23, 1998

Advocate Health Care Systems is destroying an ancient oak forest in Downers
Grove, Illinois.  Live coverage of the destruction is available to witness
at the following link
 
<http://www.concentric.net/~Mardair/pdha.htm>, or by searching for the
keywords "Lyman Woods" in the Excite or Webcrawler search engine sites.

Hear the sounds of the chain saws and the crash of trees falling to the
forest floor!  See the grandeur of an ancient oak forest turned to sawdust!
 Witness firsthand the avarice and greed of a major health care corporation!

Gail Lord, Nature Conservancy Steward for the area, said, "I find it ironic
that a corporation which sponsors a program called ‘Living Edens’ on PBS is
destroying a living eden right here in Downers Grove.  This oak forest is a
rare natural resource in Illinois and the world.  How can a so-called
‘faith-based organization’ be so cruel in destroying one of God’s rare gifts?"

The 7.5 acres of forest slated for destruction contains 300 large trees and
thousands of woodland plants. These include an  endangered plant, known as
the Wood’s Sedge, which has been documented in this forest.  These woods
are being destroyed to make way for a 100,000 square foot Wellness Center,
which will have parking space for nearly 300 cars.

John Banaszak, a local educator, said, "The forest is adjacent to the Lyman
Woods Forest Preserve, which includes a small fragment of oak savanna
woods.  These public woodlands will be significantly impacted by the
destruction of trees on the nearby Wellness Center property.  Dr. Darrel
Murray, Professor of Biology at the University of Illinois-Chicago, has
calculated that the loss of habitat will accelerate loss of biodiversity
eightfold.  In addition, 4 of 7 hardwood species in the public lands will
die out due to loss of colonizing sites on the Wellness Center property.
In the end, the public lands will degrade to such an extent that they will
no longer be oak savanna.  Instead, it will just be another patch of
weed-infested woods, populated by starlings, sparrows and possums."

For additional information, contact David McConkey, Chief Executive of Good
Samaritan Hospital at (630) 275-1120 and Steven Derks of Advocate Health
Care Systems at (630) 990-5388.

Submitted by Pierce Downer’s Heritage Alliance. P.O. Box 422, Downers
Grove, IL 60515, (630) 964-0245 .

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Mark Sklair
Mardair Design Studio
mardair@cris.com
Visit our website at <www.concentric.net/~Mardair>

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