Roland Micklem ended his fast against mountaintop removal on the evening of Dec. 13. Micklem shared a meal of yogurt and vegetable soup with his medic and his Charleston hosts, Don and Susan Churchill.
Micklem wrote a letter to friends, explaining his motives behind culminating the fast:
As you know by now, the fast is over—at least this one–and I very much feel many of you who perhaps expected it to go on longer are entitled to some explanation. It’s partly logistical; Leah, my very competent medic/nurse has to leave Monday, and to tell the truth, it’s a real hassle having people burning fossil fuel to drive here just to make sure I haven’t collapsed on the steps of the Capitol, even though your visits were eagerly anticipated and a crucial part of my witness. Also, although I haven’t reached the stage where you could hang a hat on my hip, I’m starting to get skinny, and don’t want to lose so much vitality that I can’t split kindling the few days I’ll be spending in the Coal River Valley before Christmas.
I’d like to say that the fast–quote–accomplished its purpose–unquote–and perhaps it did to an extent. It got us some attention and provided another opportunity to keep MTR in the public consciousness. As for the mourning bit, I could fast until I passed . . . and would still have enough grief remaining to carry over into the after world.
I want you to know that my decision was formed after much consultation with the Big Boss Upstairs, and I’d like to think that Roland Micklem’s priorities played a subordinate role. And there’s more action coming down the pike . . .