Frank Adams - Douglas County
Frank is a Marine Corps veteran who served three tours in Vietnam. Frank raised three sons on his property, a small parcel in the rural community of Tenmile, Oregon. Today, Frank's grandchildren enjoy visiting Grandpa, but Pembina wants to bisect his property with the pipeline, threatening everything he holds dear. Frank refuses to sell his easement. He has been fighting the pipeline for 15 years.
When my father and I purchased this piece of land in 1981, there was nothing on it. I raised my three sons here. To the outside it looks like a mobile home. But it has served myself and my boys, and now their families, very well.
When the boys were growing up, they had chores to do in the morning and they had calves, bottle calves, to feed. And then when they would sell their calf, they would put some of the money in the bank and they would buy another calf with the money. And they learned. When they were freshman in high school, they had checking accounts. It’s—I don't know—page 33 in the How to Raise Kids book.
Fifteen years of uncertainty
If I were to go down to the VA they’ll say, "Why is your blood pressure so high?" I'll say well, if you had somebody chomping at your heels and wanting to steal your land ... “Oh, are you talking about that pipeline? It's going to go through, you know; you're not going to be able to do anything about it." Well here is, 15 years later, and it still hasn't happened.
I am generally pretty level-headed and understanding, but I do not understand how a foreign company can come into the United States of America—to Tenmile, Oregon—and demand eminent domain to put a pipeline in that will not benefit the people of this country.
I was told that the obvious choice would be go right through the timber land out here and back into Willows Creek, Rice Creek. But it's all owned by timber companies. Timber companies have lots of money. Timber companies tie things up in litigation. So what do they do? They come out and they threaten you with eminent domain—poor farmers and people that have a difficult time rubbing two nickels together. That's what we have right down the road here, the people that took the money. They just don't have it.
Well, I don't have it either. But what I do have is a strong sense of obligation. I was obliged to stand up for the rights and the Constitution of the United States, and I expect them to guard me and protect me, too. But it's not happened yet.
Never give an inch
I have been fighting this for 15 years. I have made financial donations, I attend as many meetings as I can. Every chance I get I try to give the emotional support to the people who are involving themselves, who are putting themselves in harm’s way.
It's not worth dying for, but when you are backed into a corner and put in a position where either it’s either fight or flight, you don't fly. You stay and fight. And that means by any means necessary. Maybe you just make a little “pop” in the realm of things and then, maybe not. Maybe it's a big thing like the shot that was heard around the world, you know? Somebody stood up to them and wasn't going to allow this to go on.