Archived Story

It’s remember time again

Published 9:00am Monday, February 11, 2013

It is remember time again.

One thing about growing older is that more and more of our friends and neighbors go to their reward and

Mervin Oakes
Mitch

leave us here to mourn their passing and get along without their counsel and the warmth they added to our existence. For me, these have been many; too many.

Mervin Oakes was such a friend. He and Aunt Mildred were friends. I looked him up to see about his making a sign for another friend who wanted a suitable one for his big retirement home on the Eastern Shore, “York’s Folly.” When I saw how Mervin made those beautiful and enduring signs, I decided I would not compete. I had thought about devising a way to computerize sign making, since I had been unable to develop the manual skills I deemed necessary.

Indeed, Mervin showed me in detail how he had devised machinery to respond to direction from an Apple computer to carve not only letters but welcoming things like pineapples and pine cones into his signs. We never socialized much after that, but we always greeted one another warmly whenever we met, usually at concerts. I liked the guy and would have welcomed more intimacy, but we had our own fish to fry and just howdied when appropriate.

Another was Garry Fisher. I saw him at every gathering honoring veterans as long as he was able. We were more acquaintances than friends because I did not join any of the veterans’ organizations. Garry presided over many gatherings and was always promoting recognition of veterans and their contribution to making the world safe for democracy and all that. He did more than his share and was recognized for it. I salute Garry and I am glad I got to see him fairly often.

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