2012-10-11 / Lifestyles

Senior Center

Oh how I love to brag! Betty
LaPointe has been holding a “Creative Writing Class” at the senior
center since 1994. This group
has grown tremendously over the
years, with a total of 19 who have
written stories for their new book.
The group meets the last Thursday
of every month at 4 p.m. and anyone is welcome to join.
They write short stories which
often reflect life in Manistique in
times gone by, along with pieces of
history shared from other places,
as you can guess, their new book
has just been released, “Just Yesterday VII” pretty much sums it up.
The books sell for $12 each or if
you become a member you get the
privilege of buying them for $10.
Their new book recently published is their seventh. I took one
home to read, and couldn’t put the
book down until it was finished.
Senior writers for 2012 include:
• Kayo Barker
• Roseanne Weber
• Sarah Bignell
• Judie Zerilli
• Phyllis Burge
• Marian Parks
• Margaret Cain
• Alice Lewis
• Colleen Cody
• Mary Nelli
• Char Crosby
• Honey LeMaster
• Betty DeSautel
• Norma Johnson
• Carole Gould
• Dorothy Hoholik
• Carole Grossnickle
• Helen Norbotten (Guest Contributer) • Betty LaPointe, Facilitator
As I have in the past, I share a
story or two then leave you in suspense, hoping that you will make
a purchase. They make great
gifts! The Center is open Monday
through Friday, between 8 a.m. to
4 p.m.
You know how much I have been
involved in mailing military packages. This one of course touched
my heart. It is called Tribute by
Judie Zerilli.
“My father Maurice C. Reid,
my uncles Nels A Halsey, Richard M. Kassell, my father-in-law
Sam LaGrasso and my husband
Joe Zerilli, all served in our Armed
Forces during World War II and
the Vietnam War. Their experiences included involvement in
the following confrontations: The
Battle of the Bulge, Omaha Beach,
Normandy, Bastogne, Liberation
at Dachau, Attack on Pearl Harbor, and lastly, the Vietnam War.
Thankfully, none of my children
have had to participate in the confrontation happening in Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, or Iraq, however, those young men and women
who have served have my sincere
appreciation and admiration.
While participating in veterans’
counseling groups and attending
PTSD seminars, I had resounding comments from veterans and
their families that the experience

of their families’ participation in combat or service were never talked about or related to them. In losing my own father and other veterans without knowing of their service-related experiences, I realize what a large part of their lives remain “unknown” and unfamiliar to their remaining families.

I wished I had asked my father and others what their service-related experiences were like. I wished they had shared some of their stories with me that describe their emotions, their happy times, their combat friends, and what it was like to be involved in history being made. I feel their sacrifices should be known and their bravery appreciated by their families and those left behind possessing the ability to retell their stories.

The poem, “Please Tell Me A Story” came together on a weekend while my husband and my sons attended two Detroit Tiger baseball games in Detroit vs. Cleveland. It is my hope my words and sentiments encourage others to relate their experiences to their families and their families appreciate and understand their sacrifices so we may live in freedom.

Please, Tell me a Story

Tell me about your life, Dad, so far away and long ago

I feel if I don’t ask you, how else would I know.

To guarantee our freedom, you traveled far away

But the stories of your life there, I’ve never heard you say.

I watched a movie today, Grandpa, about our men at war

They mentioned Bastogne and Normandy and what so many died for.

Mom and Dad tell me you were there, so why have we not heard

So we can boast to theirs how brave you were and the medals you deserved.

In Vietnam, you must have been terrified, honey, and awfully lonely too

What you did for our country’s freedom, a hero’s welcome was due.

Instead you were ignored and ridiculed, they just didn’t understand

How a boy was sent to fight and he returned a damaged man.

What did you do in the war, Daddy? Did you miss us like we missed you?

While you were gone we helped out Mom, just like soldiers do.

Did you get hurt, did you cry, did you see other children there?

Please tell us your story—you are our hero, though you might think that we don’t care.

We’d like to hear your story; we want to hear your story

We NEED to hear the words from you!

Years later, when the history books have been written

We’ll understand and KNOW it’s true.

We will know that you were there, a part of history that you knew

That was my Grandpa, my father, my husband, my hero-that was YOU!!

Your stories are about sacrifice and bravery, about your life spent away

Your life is important and dear to us, every hour to this very day.

When you come home from Iraq, son, we’ll celebrate from dawn ‘til dusk

So proud and happy to have you home, to have you back with us.

Your time away seems like forever as we count down the days

That you were fighting to protect our freedom in countless heroic ways.

When you are ready to share your stories, please know how much we care

It’s an honor for us to know and tell others that our son was there.

You were there for Grandpa and Dad, your parents and siblings, too

But most of all, you were there for America. From the bottom of my heart-

Thank You!!

Whoah! I had a hard time not choking up while typing. Let’s continue to mail the military packages. If you have addresses of any relatives or friends serving, please share them with the Center. They do not have to be overseas. They can be serving anywhere in the military. We just want to send them a small package to say “Thank you”. If you would like to donate, drop by the Center and we will gladly give a list of what we accept.

What better time to share a new address with you:

FOB Shank

PFC LaFord, Benjamin


APO 09364

PFC LaFord is currently serving in Afghanistan and is the nephew of Larry and Audrey Savoie and Paul and Gladys LaFord. Please keep him along with the many others in your thoughts and prayers!

If you have shared addresses with us and there has been a change, please, call us at 341-5923, as we have recently had two boxes returned. Boxes run between $12.50 and $15 to mail.

Where do we go to find information out about the upcoming election? Procon.org gives information on the opinions of those running for 2012. Check it out!

Monetary donations have been received in memory of:

• Alma Thibideau from Audrey Newborn

• Emma Hardy from Audrey Newborn,

• Olga Anderson from Margaret Fountain

• Robert Mercier from Margaret Fountain

Maintenance and Support Donations were received from Bob and Ruth Johnson, Aldina Palma, and Char Turek.

We also received a monetary donation in honor of Bibi Duquette’s 90th birthday.

BRIDGE Sept. 28: 1st-Larry Savoie, 2nd-Sarah Bignall, 3rd- Lois Bellville, 4th-Helen Barton, 5th-Bibi Duquette, CFC-Betty Stewart. Hostess, Helen Barton served apple finger pie, crackers and cheese, and candy corn.

PINOCHLE Sept. 26: 1st-Cathy Wise, 2nd-George Shampine, 3rd- Pat Clark, Should’a Stayed Home- Audrey Newborn.

500 Sept. 29: 1st-Pat Clark, 2nd-Chris Keener, 3rd-Teddy Bouchard, Should’a Stayed Home- Perry Wise.

Birthdays this week: Oct. 4-Audrey Newborn, Edith Greene, Ken Fagan, and Bob Wright, Oct. 7-Jim Brulla, Oct. 8-Peter Gorsche, and Oct. 9-Cherie Michalik.

Return to top