SEABROOK RESIDENTS’ STORIES: Carlene Peruse, Diane Garand, Tony and Louisa Santasucci from Robbie Leppzer’s film

Carlene Peruse, Diane Garand, Tony and Louisa Santasucci

Robbie Leppzer, in his film Seabrook 77, interviewed Seabrook residents; following are excerpts.

 Carlene Peruse:

I have lived in Seabrook all of my life and I am all against the nuclear plant. I don’t want it; we don’t need it and we’re in hopes of stopping it.

My first thought, of course, is the radiation. I have children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. It won’t affect me so much, at my age, I’m 62, but the younger ones growing up, I’m afraid it definitely will. We took up a petition and had it put on the ballot. “Should there be a nuclear power plant in Seabrook?” The vote came out 768 “no” and 632 “yes. The selectman called it non-binding.

Our votes didn’t count, evidently. I’m still ready to fight as long as I can. I think if everyone sticks together, it counts.

Luisa and Tony Santasucci, a retired couple in their 70s:

Luisa:  I was in the kitchen and I heard a knock on the door and then I walked out and there was this Daley, his name was. He turned around he says “Well we’re going to take your property.” I says “You will not.’’ He says “Well we’ll get it one way or the other with a bulldozer to your land.” I says ‘You do it and I’ll stand right in front of it. You’ll have to kill me before you take my land. My husband broke his back all these years building up this place.”

Tony: I worked hard for my money. Nobody gave me nothing. Everything I got I worked for. I believe in the law. These people don’t believe in the law. They think because they’re big they can throw whatever they want. It’s a shame. These people don’t care for nothing. I want President Carter to do something about it! He’s supposed to be the chief of the country. We voted twice against it and our vote was no good. I voted for Jimmy Carter. If my vote is no good, I don’t think Jimmy Carter should be in office.

Louisa and I we’ve been married over pretty close to 40 years. This piece of land here was all woods but me and her cleared it out and we made it our home. We put in a few cabbages and tomatoes and a little corn. I try to raise a little food so we won’t have to go to the market and buy it. You go to the market and it cost you an arm and a leg.

I think the sooner the people wake up, the better off we’re going to be. We really don’t need these nuclear plants. They’ll never get my property no matter how much money they got. They’re not going to scare me and they’re not going to destroy me. I got to say the only way they can get me is either shoot me or kill me and I think we’ve got laws against that. This is our home.

Diane Garand:

It started very small. There was only a handful of people at the time who fully realized what was going to happen. And it just mushroomed. There was a point of asking them “Alright, do you know what plutonium is and do you know what radioactivity is?” The people just sat there, ‘Well, no, I don’t really know.” I said, “Well you’re going to have it in your back yard now.” Then a few decided to go out and find out what was going on and just exactly what was coming into town. It got to the point where they realized exactly what’s going on.

I’ve always felt that this country stood for freedom of speech, and the people counted. But it seems so nowadays it’s just big business and politics; they’re hand in hand. The people have lost their voices just like in this town. We cast a ballot, a legal-binding vote. And they look at it as if to say “Hey, we don’t give a damn what you people want. We’re going to do what we want.” The only way that people are going to get a point across is to get together and just take what action is necessary. But I think the non-violent approach to it frustrates the opposition because they don’t know what to do.

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