RE YOUR June 4 editorial about Dr. George Tiller:

In 1996, I was pregnant with my first and only child. At nine weeks, I was told that tests indicated the fetus had died. My doctor said there was no heartbeat, and I was given the option of continuing the pregnancy until a miscarriage occurred, or undergoing a D&C. I chose the D&C. Genetic testing showed the fetus had trisomy 15 and wouldn't have survived.

I was blessed that nature made the decision to terminate my pregnancy for me. Too often women don't learn of genetic abnormalities until after the first trimester. It is these women who needed to know that there was a Dr. Tiller to whom they could turn.

The decision to end a pregnancy is not an easy one for most women. But once the choice to end a pregnancy has been made, women should be able to do so without fear. And it is the doctors who are there to help them, despite the threats made against their lives, who are the true heroes during these heart-wrenching times. If nature had not stepped in, it would have been comforting to know that there was a Dr. Tiller there, or others like him, who would have helped me during one of the most difficult periods of my life.

The death of George Tiller saddens me, and should sadden every woman in America. On May 31, 2009, we all lost a true American hero.

Terri Davis, Philadelphia

What died with the killing of George Tiller?

For starters, 60,000 lives not lived.

Or how about a number of statistical facts the editors neglected to provide that directly relate to the murdered abortionist's story?

The portion of the 51 million abortions performed in this country from 1970-2009 to actually protect the health of the woman has averaged out at about 3.5 percent.

Spanning that period, the cost of an abortion averages out to $372. For the 60,000 abortions Tiller performed during those 29 years, he bankrolled more than $22 million.

But the editors portrayed him merely as a benevolent, churchgoing soul who was in business purely to alleviate the pain of desperate "late-term" patients. The truth is the abortion industry didn't become a $500 million-a-year enterprise on "late-term" cases. Since 1973, more than 75 percent of all abortions have occurred merely because unexpected pregnancies are an inconvenience in our culture of death.

John Murray, Galloway, N.J.

Another view on Panthers

Have to disagree with Stu Bykofsky's take on the New Black Panthers.

I saw the tape. If Zack Stalberg of the Committee of 70 doesn't think those were intimidating guys, he should take another look.

Bartle Bull has credibility. He was chairman of the Kennedy for President committee in New York and spent a lot of time in Mississippi in the 1960s. I read excerpts of his letter to the Justice Department. He is no O'Reilly.

His words: "I did not see anything close to this in Mississippi in the 1960s. I am appalled!"

The NBP reminds me of Hitler's brownshirts.

Stalberg should be scared witless!

Bob Shapley, Phoenixville

Council needs a DROP of reality

To all you City Council members who think you're entitled to DROP - get real. Let's keep the DROP program for who it was meant for - police, firefighters, sanitation workers and any other employees who break their backs daily in any type of weather.

If Council had to do what every working person in this city has to (pay for your own gas, your own health care, your own vehicle and not have an extended summer vacation), it might actually help you politicians deal with everyday issues that affect the people who pay your salary - the citizens of Philly.

Mark Gittel, Philadelphia