To the editor:

I've been mulling over how to express my gratitude to Bill Fahey and at the same time defend his character.

The false accusations made against him are disturbing. Fahey and his colleagues were my rock when I was in middle school and high school. I can only imagine that they have continued to provide a safe place for youth since my time.

I graduated from Andover high School in 2006. I know now even more how hard the world is for children.

Bill Fahey was someone I could turn to, no matter what, to share a problem or something spectacular that happened.

Creating a bond with a person is not an easy task — especially with someone, like myself, who is wary of trusting.

He never forced me to speak about my struggles but instead provided me with a relaxed and comfortable environment that I longed for. This also took place in a small office in the Town Hall of Andover. There were always dreams of creating a large center to help our youth and keep them safe and loved.

I struggle with understanding how that is wrong and how someone who has been such an incredible resource for Andover is now the target of false accusations.

When I met Bill Fahey, I was struggling with my parents’ divorce and acceptance and so much more. But when I walked into Andover Youth Services, so much weight was lifted off my shoulders because I finally found an outlet and a place where I could laugh and be me.

Maggie Matera

Haverhill

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