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Can you believe it is mid-August already? The summer we wait for so long is ¾ over, and we certainly have had a summer of heat and just enough rain in most localities to produce quite good crops so far. Second, hay cuts are already in on some farms; the wheat harvest was good with lots of straw for bedding.

However, do give a thought to those who are going hungry, both here at home and in so many places around the world. Loaves and Fishes report double the number of people registering for the program as in other years. And what of all the other places on earth where there are no such programs? We are so very fortunate to live where we do!

Only a few celebrations this week! Happy birthday to Lee Anne Moore O’Connor, who was born and raised just south of Sandford, the daughter of Ken and Brenda Moore. Jamie and Janet (Cox) Rose have returned from a wonderful trip to England, where they met up with daughter Kyra, who has been on an extended tour of England and Scotland. Kyra was able to give them a very meaningful tour of the best places to visit.

Best wishes to Cindy Risebrough, who has challenged herself to ride her bike 600KM to raise money for cancer research. She is attempting to raise $2500 and already has a goodly amount in hand with lots of miles and time to go.

Big congratulations to our own Robyn Ottolini, who finally got on the Boots and Hearts stage. She has been looking forward to it all year, after being nominated ages ago, and got to be one of the headliners along with her idol Shania Twain. Robyn has not been idle all this time but has constantly been doing shows, even in England, I think, always perfecting.

This week I had a letter from a lady whose family were patients of mine many moons ago. She sent me a copy of a newspaper page she discovered. Unfortunately, there was no date and no newspaper name or correspondent’s name, but it included columns from all the surrounding small communities. Strangely enough, Epsom was not among them, although Sandford was. The best I could figure from events and the names I recognized it was from October 1948-1950. A real treasure to look over.

Last week I mentioned the deaths that had occurred. The first was that of Sandra Carol Noble, daughter of Grant and Gail Noble. The Nobles lived just down the road, and Sandra was raised here. This was the result of an accident. Sandra was only 57, was married to Taras and had one daughter.

Joan McNair was born and raised in Uxbridge before somehow connecting with Spike McNair, who was a teacher. Joan worked for many years for Ron Noble Insurance. Both Spike and Joan were involved in community activities, and the one I recall best was the Red Cross Society, in the days when we had our own office and ran our own programs.

Ernie Klinker was a very well–known personage who arrived in town as a teacher and ended up staying long after retirement. He was active in the Legion and many other activities. I always enjoyed his sense of humour and storytelling as he lived a very varied and interesting life before and after his army career. Our sympathies to his wife, June Haynes.

Wilma Doucette was a lovely lady who lived all her life in and around Uxbridge, where her family, the Cards, had lived for many years. Many will remember Card’s Garage. In the later years, she suffered from arthritis but still lived in her house on Joseph Street, with some help from her several children.

Lastly, for now, was Cloyne Stearman. Cloyne lived on the farm just north of me, purchased in 1955, but he was born just a few farms up on the opposite side of the road. He married Jeannette Dobson, who was a cousin of mine, and with whom I went to high school, and they had two children, Arlene and Rob.

There were several siblings in the Stearman family; all but Elva had passed before him. Strangely enough, Elva also married a cousin of mine but in another line. Cloyne was involved in Junior farmers and other farm-related activities, sang in a JF choir and later enjoyed turning his garage into a woodworking shop where Rob joined him. His last few months were spent in Butternut Manor.

Friday night at the Foster was a great success this week as we reached one of the largest attendances so far this year. Linda Dempster was the guest artist. Her friend Laura Heighway, the violin player, has been ill and unable to attend. Linda entertained the crowd with her beautiful voice and her mastery of an unusual instrument (for here), the Appalachian Mountains Dulcimer, which has a beautiful tone. She also played her guitar and, I might say, she had no need for a microphone. Next week Chris Saunders, and possibly friends, will be the entertainer.

Lucy Maud Squad prepared a Ukrainian lunch on Wednesday, which was quite good and filling, as always. The speakers were Angie, who showed us her Ukrainian Easter Eggs and a young Ukrainian lady who works with the Durham Ukrainian Relief Fund. Her sister was also present, and she and their mother had just recently escaped into Germany and from there to Canada. Quite an emotional few moments!

Next week following the lunch, Jennifer Carol will stage her amazing “Maud of Leaskdale” one-woman play. Three other occasions are available to see this play later in the week.

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