May 21, 2019 -Vermont has lost one of our most remarkable woman; today film maker, journalist, Black Panther historian, communard, Green Mountain Red, revolutionary, and (ironically) Richmond constable Roz Payne has left this world and these Green Hills for points beyond. Roz grew up in a working class-leftist household in New Jersey. Her mother was a union organizer in Lawrence, MA in the 1930s, and her father ran for NJ State Senate as a member of the Socialist Party. Poet Allen Ginsberg was her sometimes babysitter.
Longtime friend Joe Crompton passed away under the full moon.
You know Joe if you shopped at the Co-op. He was the sausage-making meat expert in the butcher area.
You know Joe if you worked at the Co-op. He kept a constant eye on management and was a leading advocate for the union. He spent many a year trying to get better situations for employees, which paid off in recent years with a succesful union vote.
On behalf of Public Works, I was able to take a few aerial views of Lester Powers’ funeral procession earlier today. Lester served the town for 50 years from 1945 to 1995 and operated a road grader for the majority of that time. As such, Mr. Powers’ family requested one to lead the procession.
She is a library of understanding and love.
Deborah was fearlessly tender in her devotion
to Kip, April, Alex, Michael, Grandkids & friends.
Steadfast love, despite all of life’s commotions
Passionate for her books and libraries of lore,
She more wise in her love than any tome.
A life abundant with adventures galore
guided by a spirit of caring and wisdom.
Our shipmate, friend, Earl Cavanagh, passed on. Much love to Nancy Cavanagh, and family. Zoe Kopp and Namaya Art Rat Peace.
Neil Taylor’s life
Diamondstone’s wife, four children, 14 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren will host a public celebration of his life Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the site of their former homestead at 787 Western Ave. The family is directing memorial contributions to Vermont’s Liberty Union Party, the American Civil Liberties Union and Green Mountain Veterans for Peace.
Peter Diamondstone has Passed.
My beautiful loving sister Rupa Cousins has passed on today. I was awake most of the night restless. And there is great peace, joy with sadness in her passing. I wrote this last night and this morning i send this. To all who were touched by her magic, passion and love for life, let us celebrate, Rupa Sister Rainbow Dancer.
The following notice was posted on the St Michael’s Episcopal Church’s website.
The Ringling Bros. circus is shutting down this May after 146 years. This circus would come to Brattleboro back in the day.
Owners says it is a combination of the times (we are easily distracted by other things), the cost of hauling an enormous show from town to town, and a lack of elephants. Elephants had been a part of the show until last year and there was a major drop-off in attendance after they left.
Final shows will be in Providence, RI, and Uniondale, NY later this spring. 500 employees will be looking for work.
(Note to former-circus folk, do consider coming up to Brattleboro. Our circus schoool is being built as I type and we could use more!)
If you knew him, you know he was a kind and gentle human being. I did not know him well, but I always smiled when I saw him coming. He was good. He was kind.
Gene Wilder. Don’t know the guy at all, other than through his work, but his passing made me think again of how much I’ve been entertained by Mr. Wilder throughout the years.
For me, Willy Wonka is perhaps one of the more inspirational movies from childhood that I return to over and over in my life. A poor nothing of a boy gets a lucky break, explores a highly creative manufacturing establishment, and ends up being given the chocolate factory. Wilder’s Wonka is the only one worth watching.
A few guiding lessons that stick with me from lyrics and lines in the film:
1. If you want to view paradise, simply look around and view it. Anything you want to, do it. Want to change the world? There’s nothing to it.
We relish the early signs of Spring in this area, robins, crocuses to name a few. One indicator for myself, and a number of others was Jose’ Cordero in his motored cart, sitting in front of the Samuel Elliott Apartments in downtown Brattleboro. He would greet you with a smile, and depending on the day would engage you in sunny conversation, or take an opportunity to just get things off his chest, and either way always entertaining.
In the late seventies and early eighties you could view Jose’ leaning out of his apartment window observing the pulse of Main street. He also worked at Walkers Resturant and during his break you could find him out front leaning against the building taking in the moment, always in his starched white apron. He eventually moved into the S.E. Apartments and again he was often in view on his upper floor balcony enjoying the view.
Well, that takes the wind out my funky sails. Prince just died at age 57. The year 2016 continues to be a brutal year for entertainment.
I was a rock and roll fan living in Florida on a visit to Buffalo when I first hear Prince. I was at a party of friends who attended a private school. They were cool. I was not. At some point someone put on Controversy. It was amazing and like nothing I had heard before. “What is this?” I asked. “Prince,” was the answer. “It is punk-funk.”
Punk-funk? I didn’t know either of those terms very well, but I liked it. When I got back to Florida I found the single, and the album. I was hooked.
There will be a gathering in memory of Lawrence Auclair at Mocha Joe’s on Saturday May 9th at noon. Please come join us.
Georg Steinmeyer passed away recently, just a few weeks after his wife, Hanne.
Georg was a very interesting person. He grew up in Germany as part of the Steinmeyer organ building family, and came to Brattleboro in the fall of 1955 to work as Director of the pipe organ division of the Estey Organ Company. He often told the story of getting a transatlantic phone call in Europe from the United States, a rare occurrence, asking him to take the job.
Unfortunately, Estey’s days were numbered. Georg helped to oversee the building and installation of the final pipe organs built by the company.
I recently learned that Hanne Steinmeyer had passed on.
I met Hanne through the Estey Organ Museum. Her husband Georg was an active member, and she would often assist at events, helping with food, drink, decorations or crowd control. I would often run into her at some point during an event to sit, talk, and sip some wine. Hanne was funny and smart, and retained her German accent.
Lise and I once went with Hanne and Georg to Mass MOCA. On the drive we got to learn a bit about her early years.
I just read that VPR’s southern Vermont correspondent, Susan Keese, passed away.
I’ve known Susan for many years, after first meeting her to talk about things going on at the Estey Organ Museum. Being a radio producer, her medium was sound, and stories that had interesting sounds or music being played were often of interest to her and her listeners.
She got very interested in the 2005 EsteyFest, a gathering of reed organ enthusiasts, many of whom brought instruments with them.
Over the years, whenever I had a potential story that included good sounds, I’d make sure she knew about it.