RANCHER considers creating prairie park

Thursday, August 30th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) _ A rancher who donated land in Colorado for the Oklahoma State University plane crash memorial is considering creating a prairie park that would link the memorial and the crash site.

Darrel Haerther of Strasburg, Colo., deeded a piece of land to OSU to build a permanent memorial. A post that was erected at the crash site, about 1,000 feet from the memorial, is on property owned by Haerther.

Haerther said he had concerns about trespassing and potential liability if someone got hurt trying to get to the crash marker. He spoke with David Bosserman, associate vice president and controller at OSU, about fencing the memorial and crash site and creating a natural prairie park.

``We still haven't made a decision one way or another,'' Haerther said. ``I'm waiting to hear back as to whether this is really something that the families want or not. If we did so, then we would fence it and designate it an OSU park.''

Bosserman said discussions are preliminary and no acreage amount has been discussed or timetable set for a decision.

``We have talked about the feasibility of making that happen and if it can be worked out, that's what we would like to do,'' Bosserman said.

The Jan. 27 plane crash killed 10 men, including two Oklahoma State basketball players. The memorial was dedicated Saturday.