For a few anxious days last month, we–like so many others who know Dick and Jeannette Pinette–worried as we waited for word of their well being. From the moment we heard that the Florida town where they live, Port Charlotte, was right in the path of Hurricane Charley, we tried to reach them. After three days, we learned that they were OK. Dick, who is familiar to readers of this publication for his monthly writings, scooped up his manuscripts for next month’s issue literally as he and Jeannette were forced to flee their home.
As we edited his stories for this issue, we wondered how we could convey to readers the ordeal that the Pinettes endured. Then, just days before we went to print, the familiar typing on the face of an envelope arrived in our mail. It was a story from Dick Pinette and it told, in a way we never could, what he saw and felt during the hurricane and in the days following. A day after receiving his story, his two stories for October arrived, right on time and without a hint of the utter turmoil those pages and their writer had been through.
We know that Dick lost portions of his valuable archives as a result of Hurricane Charley. While we are grateful for the Pinettes’ safety, we lament the couple’s many losses. But Dick’s mind remains his best resource–an unmatched repository of North Country facts and lore. And, thank goodness, that’s still very much with us.
This month Dick treats us to his own personal memories of what history records as the greatest lumberjack competition ever. That event took place in the year 1929, as the City of Berlin celebrated the 100th anniversary of its incorporation. Also, Dick brings to light an account of three women who traveled through 13 Mile Woods and on to Errol and Dixville Notch in the 19th Century.
This month, this publication’s other columnist, Dick Richards, includes an account of his and his wife’s brush with the wrath of Nature–the recent flooding which hit their area of South Canaan, Vt., just across the Connecticut River.
It certainly has been a wild summer. We did manage to find a short respite from all the rain while on the midway of the North Haverhill Fair. But just as our visit to the fair was over, the clouds burst into a deluge. We expect to be at the Lancaster Fair within 24 hours after these words are written and the weather forecast is for sunshine. We’re keeping our fingers crossed….
This month we also include our monthly roundup of “News Briefs,” as well as a “Tribute” to a grand actress from the past who we had the pleasure of interviewing in these pages back in 1997, Fay Wray.
Read our next entry here.
Charles J. Jordan