FOR YOUR HEALTH: Is That Video Game A Health Risk? Three Things Parents Should Know

(NAPSI)—Some games topping holiday wish lists-including the season’s most anticipated release, “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare”—contain imagery that could be putting the health of young people at risk.

Smoking is found in many video games, including those rated appropriate for teenagers. Research shows 44 percent of adolescents who start smoking do so because of images they see in movies. Tobacco use in video games is likely to promote youth smoking in similar ways.

Smoking can be found and is often glamorized in video games.

Tobacco imagery is widespread in video games played by youth and many young gamers described tobacco use as making a character “cooler,” or “tougher” according to Truth Initiative research.

Additionally, past research showed that between 1994 and 2011, 60 out of 78 video game publishers included tobacco imagery in at least one of their youth-rated games.

A report released this year also revealed that the tobacco industry identified video games as a marketing opportunity.

Ratings and content descriptors are often incomplete.

Just because a game is rated appropriate for youth doesn’t mean it is free of tobacco imagery.

A 2015 survey by UC San Francisco confirmed tobacco content in 42 percent of the video games that participants reported playing; however, only 8 percent of these games had tobacco warnings from the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), the gaming industry’s self-regulatory organization.

In its report, “Played: Smoking and Video Games,” Truth Initiative called on the ESRB to consistently identify and disclose if any game contains tobacco references. Truth Initiative is also urging game developers to stop including tobacco imagery in their games, particularly those played by youth, regardless of their ESRB rating.

Some games are leaders on the issue.

While many games contain smoking, some game developers recognize the risk.

For example, “Gears 5,” the newest installment in the popular “Gears of War” series, is now completely smoke-free. The publisher made the decision after Truth Initiative approached the game’s corporate entities about the issue, according to an article in Variety.

Even as national smoking rates decline to record lows, smoking continues to be portrayed on screens. Glamorizing and re-normalizing smoking could threaten the progress the U.S. has made in decreasing tobacco use, which still kills 1,300 Americans every day.

Learn More

For more information, and to read the Truth Initiative report “Action needed: Tobacco in pop culture,” go to

SOLON & BEYOND: 4-H’ers hold November meeting; Words from a little book to contemplate

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

Thanks be to my son Peter for coming down on a cold icy winter night to straighten out this strange, contrary computer for me. I knew that there wasn’t going to be any paper last week, and I had tried my best to get the thing up and running again for several days without success. I had come to the point of even considering using some pretty foul words (but , I didn’t!).

The worst part was the blasted machine had put an email of a 4-H Club report that I should have received and put in this paper weeks ago; so even though it is late but I’m going to send it anyway.

The Solon Pine Tree 4-H had their monthly meeting on November 9. They had 13 members in attendance and three visitors. The craft project was making decorative plates with fabrics.

Cooper Dellarma started the business meeting. They shared information on making swags or center pieces at the Christmas workshop being offered at the Somerset County Extension office. They voted in favor of adopting a family for Christmas dinner. They also voted in favor to donate items to the animal shelter and have a Yankee swap at our Christmas party. During the meeting They also elected officers.

Received the following e-mail from Carol Dolan: The next Embden Historical Society meeting is Monday, April 13, 2020, at 6:30 p.m., at the Embden Community Center (797) Embden Pond Road, Embden). At 7 p.m., Jack Gibson will give his presentation along with a Power Point presentation of ” Properties, Trails & History of Somerset Woods.” ( There is some land in Embden that’s part of this.)

I hope all of you had a very Merry Christmas and it will continue into the new year which will be here when this issue comes out.

I came across these words in a little book by Susan Polis Schutz entitled “One World, One Heart.” We who inherit the earth will cheer the new moon peaking through the womb who admire the green leaves of summer turning to lustrous reds and yellows who watch them fall to the ground cold, brown and stiff.

We who give birth to new life who are exhilarated by the sun rising who are romanced by the sun setting who dream to the floating clouds…

We who have a passing mark on the future of the world must have the same heart must have compassion for one another must have respect for one another must understand that though we have differences we all want the same things Nothing should divide us.

I admit that I dream a lot but I’m hoping and praying that these words stay with many of you in this coming year: All Hearts Must Be One: Everyone has the same emotions, Everyone has the same feelings, Everyone has the same desires, No matter where we live or what we believe in all hearts must be one. We must make the world a place where love dominates our hearts, nature sets the standard for beauty, simplicity, and honesty are the essence of our relationships , kindness guides our actions and everyone respects one another.

And now for Percy’s memoir: He had helped me write these columns for many years, and it was a sad day on November 4, 2015, when he died at the ripe old age of 17. He had been giving his advice on how to live and love at the end of these columns for much of that time. (I did let him write the whole column one week, and his faithful readers were truly pleased!) Received a little book (5+ 7) and only 24 pages book for Christmas that I shall treasure, called Positive Thinking and Laughter For The Soul. The following is from that little book and remember the words as you enter 2020! Life isn’t about Waiting For The Storm To Pass…It’s About Learning To Dance in The Rain… So I wish you very Happy New Year!

GARDEN WORKS: Winter time hints to calm the chill

Emily Catesby Emily Cates

The cold winter winds dance along the frozen landscape, whispering their secrets to the trees swaying to the beat of a timeless song of the season. Shaking the snow from their limbs, they remind me of slow-motion pets stepping inside to dry off, throwing wet snowflakes in every direction. (Of course, I seem to always be within distance of getting snow-showered whenever this happens.)

As we venture into the coldest and darkest time of the year, little things that add warmth and comfort can add up to needed enjoyment. In this article, let’s look at a few things to brighten our winter days. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to send a message!

Working outdoors on a nice winter’s day is one of my favorite things to do – if done right. Of course, I always make sure to bundle up and wear my warm boots. If I’m outside for a while, or it’s really cold, then I’ll place some warmers in my boots and mittens. These foot and hand warmers, as well as medical hot packs that I’ve found to work comparably, are found in stores and online.

Though I consider warmers a tad spendy, they are necessary for hands and feet that have been overexposed to the cold in times past and consequently sensitized. Folks, don’t ever ignore cold hands and feet! You’ll regret it, I promise, like I have from the time I was a kid and went through swampy ice up to my knees and in my boots. Ever since then my feet get mad at me when they’re cold – especially when there are steel-toed or inadequate boots involved. In my not-so-humble opinion, it’s better to be warm and look silly, than to be fashionable and freezing!

Speaking of hands and feet, these parts of us may need extra attention this time of year. The wintertime environment both indoors and out has a tendency to promote dry, chapped skin. Lips, face, and hands are especially vulnerable parts that could need a little TLC.

Want to know some healing salve recipes I’ve found to be especially useful? Since I’m really bad at measuring when I make things, I’ll give you the concept: Start with a fat for a base. I mostly use Shea butter – but coconut oil, olive oil, beeswax, cocoa butter, mango butter, vitamin E, and jojoba oil are good, too. Lard and bear fat are traditional. These can be used singly or in combinations that work for you.

Safe, common herbs and such I have used that add soothing and healing properties include elder flowers, balsam fir, mallow, plantain, and calendula petals. Essential oils like rose, lavender, orange, clove, vanilla, or others can be added at the end of infusing to impart scent to the salve. (Follow directions on bottles since essential oils are really concentrated! Also, make sure to positively identify all ingredients. Test a small area of the skin with finished product salve to make sure it doesn’t cause irritation.)

Ratios of fat to dried plant material depend on availability and desired strength. I usually crumble dried plant material by hand or with a coffee grinder in amounts that “feel” right. (Consult a reputable source for specific ratios.) Combine the fat with herbs in a pot over low heat and gently stir once any solid fats have melted. Keep on low heat for several hours until sufficiently infused or until the desired strength is attained. (I leave my pots of salves on top of the wood stove on trivets overnight.) Strain the salve, add essential oils if using, and carefully pour into clean jars. Don’t forget to label what you’ve got and the date you made it.

Of course, a nice cup of hot tea and cuddly blankets should be on every winter list. To top it all off, how about a favorite seed catalog, a comfy chair, and a warm wood stove? Ah, now that’s good living!

2019 Central Maine Youth Hockey U8 White Mite Team

Front row, from left to right, Brad Poulin, Cooper Varney, Carl Bauer, Ryder Nadeau, Benjamin Wilkinson and Molly Borman, Back row, coach Matt Borman, Coach Justin Lawler, Easton Gradie, Jace Poulin, Chase Lawler, Tristyn Thoopsamoot, Coach Jarrod Poulin and Coach Erik Nadeau. (photo by Mark Huard, Central Maine Photography)

SCORES & OUTDOORS – Opossum in my space: now it’s become personal

The Virginia opossum

Roland D. Halleeby Roland D. Hallee

It has now become personal.

Over the past 25 years, or so, I have written two columns on the opossum. Mainly because one had been sighted in Winslow, and I have seen a few dead alongside of the highway as a result of collisions with automobiles.

My first encounter with an opossum was in 1967 while living on Long Island, in New York. There was a stockade fence between the property where I was living and the neighbor, and I found it laying, “playing ‘possum,” along the fence.

I never really gave them much thought.

Until last week, when my neighbor from across the street informed me that on two occasions, in the evening. she had seen two, what seemed to be juvenile, opossum coming in and out of the small depression on the front walkway under the steps. A quick investigation revealed nothing.

Since then, I have not seen footprints in the snow, nor have my surveillance cameras picked up any activity, although the cameras are not pointed toward the ground. It is, however, worth my scrutiny.

The opossum, Didelphis virginiana, is a marsupial endemic to the Americas. The largest order of marsupials in the Western Hemisphere, it comprises 103 or more species in 19 genera. Opossums originated in South America and entered North America in the Great American Interchange following the connection of the two continents. Their unspecialized biology, flexible diet, and reproductive habits make them successful colonizers and survivors in diverse locations and conditions.

In the United States and Canada, the only species found is the Virginia opossum, and it is generally referred to as a ‘possum.

The word “opossum” is borrowed from the Powhatan language and was first recorded between 1607 and 1611 by John Smith (as opassom) and William Strachey (as aposoum). Both men encountered the language at the British settlement of Jamestown, Virginia, which Smith helped to found and where Strachey later served as its first secretary. Strachey’s notes describe the opossum as a “beast in bigness of a pig and in taste alike,” while Smith recorded it “hath an head like a swine … tail like a rat … of the bigness of a cat.” The Powhatan word ultimately derives from a Proto-Algonquian word meaning “white dog or dog-like beast.”

Opossums are usually solitary and nomadic, staying in one area as long as food and water are easily available. Some families will group together in ready-made burrows or even under houses. Though they will temporarily occupy abandoned burrows, they do not dig or put much effort into building their own. As nocturnal animals, they favor dark, secure areas. These areas may be below ground or above.

An opossum “playing ‘possum.”

When threatened or harmed, they will “play possum,” mimicking the appearance and smell of a sick or dead animal. This physiological response is involuntary (like fainting), rather than a conscious act. In the case of baby opossums, however, the brain does not always react this way at the appropriate moment, and therefore they often fail to “play dead” when threatened.

When an opossum is “playing possum,” the animal’s lips are drawn back, the teeth are bared, saliva foams around the mouth, the eyes close or half-close, and a foul-smelling fluid is secreted from the anal glands. The stiff, curled body can be poked at, turned over, and even carried away without reaction. The animal will typically regain consciousness after a period of a few minutes to four hours, a process that begins with slight twitching of the ears.

Some species of opossums have prehensile tails, although dangling by the tail is more common among juveniles. An opossum may also use its tail as a brace and a fifth limb when climbing. The tail is occasionally used as a grip to carry bunches of leaves or bedding materials to the nest. A mother will sometimes carry her young upon her back, where they will cling tightly even when she is climbing or running.

Threatened opossums (especially males) will growl deeply, raising their pitch as the threat becomes more urgent. Males make a clicking “smack” noise out of the side of their mouths as they wander in search of a mate, and females will sometimes repeat the sound in return. When separated or distressed, baby opossums will make a sneezing noise to signal their mother. The mother in return makes the clicking sound and waits for the baby to find her. If threatened, the baby will open its mouth and quietly hiss until the threat is gone.

Opossums eat dead animals, insects, rodents and birds. They also feed on eggs, frogs, plants, fruits and grain. One source notes their need for high amounts of calcium. Thus possums eat the skeletal remains of rodents and roadkill animals. Opossums also eat dog food, cat food and human food waste. Opossums are also notable for their ability to clean themselves of ticks, which they then eat. Some estimates suggest they can eliminate up to 5,000 ticks in a season.

With this in mind, if I do have opossum living under my steps, it would be nice if I could capture them and relocate them at camp where they would be very useful in controlling the tick population. They’d also probably put on some weight.

The Virginia opossum lives in regions as far north as Canada and as far south as Central America. The Virginia opossum can often be found in wooded areas, though its habitat may vary widely. Opossums have been moving north in recent years.

The Virginia opossum was once widely hunted and consumed in the United States. Opossum farms have been operated in the United States in the past. Sweet potatoes were eaten together with the possum in America’s southern area. South Carolina cuisine includes opossum, and President Jimmy Carter hunted opossums in addition to other small game. Raccoon, opossum, partridges, prairie hen, and frogs were among the fare Mark Twain recorded as part of American cuisine.

Opossum oil (possum grease) is high in essential fatty acids and has been used as a chest rub and a carrier for arthritis remedies given as topical salves.

Opossum pelts have long been part of the fur trade.

So, I will be watching closely to see if I, indeed, have opossum living with me. With winter settling in, it’s not possible for me to move those stairs at this time.

Roland’s trivia question of the week:

How many times has MLB pitcher Nolan Ryan’s jersey number been retired?

Answer can be found here.

Roland’s Trivia Question for Thursday, January 2, 2019

How many times has MLB pitcher Nolan Ryan’s jersey number been retired?


Three. Number 30 by the Angels, and #34 by the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers.

Obituaries for Thursday, January 2, 2019


BRUNSWICK – Helen (Kenoyer) Mosher, 104, passed away on Tuesday, December 17, 2019. She was born on September 17, 1915, in a small sod house built by Henry and Annie Kenoyer on the native plains of Vale, South Dakota. She was the first daughter born to a family of 10 children.

Her mother taught her as a young girl that a mother’s love is not divided like pumpkin pie between the children she brings into the world. Much to the contrary, a mother’s heart is multiplied with each successive life she creates, which explains a mother’s seemingly boundless capacity for love. What then, can we say of our Great-Great Grammy Helen who created, then mothered five living generations of children? Her lifetime is ultimately a mother’s love story of a proud and fiercely resilient woman who desperately loved her children, husband and extended family, while serving as the cornerstone of her community during the 104 years that her light shined ever so brightly on this earthly realm.

Helen crossed into the flowered fields of the great hereafter to join her pre-deceased husband Charles Mosher of 64 years, with whom she mothered more than 80 direct decedents, each of whom carries her enduring legacy of grace, piety and generosity.

Her humble beginnings on the Cheyenne River and pioneer values forged an ideology of personal resolve that placed family as the first priority in all matters. She learned as a young girl that home is where the heart rests after her family of 12 boarded a Dodge Touring car and Model T Ford truck to travel to a farm in Windsor, Maine, where the Kenoyers made their home. Her lifetime in Maine transcended the travails of living history through the Great Depression and multiple wartime services, to which she was no stranger as her Gold Star family gave handsomely to the causes of our nation. The loss of her youngest brother, Russell Kenoyer, over the skies of Germany on April 16, 1945, never healed, despite her stalwart faith bolstered by her decades long worship at the South China Community Church, on the shores of China Lake. Her longevity likewise saw the predeceased passing of her oldest daughter Margaret, brothers and sisters and grandchildren Laurie and Ross.

Having met Charles Mosher, the love of her life, she moved from her family home in Windsor to their first home in Benton Station where they raised a family, before moving to their final home overlooking China Lake. It was here that they lived their elder lives in the company of the huge family they bore spending summers at small cottages on Pine Point, on China Lake, hosting regular family gatherings and their rapidly multiplying grandchildren.

Her surviving family in addition to her children Richard, David and Winnifred and cousin Chuck Sisson who grew up in the Kenoyer family, includes more than 76 grandchildren, great- and great-great-grandchildren. We will remember with affinity her illuminating and continuous presence in our lives, her emphasis on education, family history and summers on China Lake with heavy cookie jar lids, eating white perch for supper, Red Sox games on the radio, motor boats, painted rocks leading to the shore, slamming screen doors, the aromatic scent of pine needles and, always, her humming melodies somewhere in the house not far away.

Most of all, Helen Mosher was an affirmation not only of the existence of God in our world, but that He must truly love us to give us so many years in the company of her great maternal spirit. She was, after all, our mother whom we loved as the circle continues, unbroken.

Friends wishing may make donations in her memory to the S. China Community Church, 246 Village Street, S. China, Maine 04358.

Arrangements by Dan & Scott’s Cremation & Funeral Service, 445 Waterville Road, Skowhegan.


WATERVILLE – Jacqueline C. Vigue, 92, passed away at the Woodlands Assisted Living Center, in Waterville, on Monday, December 9, 2019. Jacqueline was born on January 1, 1927, the daughter of Joseph and Bertha (Madore) Rodrigue.

Jacqueline married Roger Vigue on May 30, 1962, and they made their home in Waterville. Jacqueline was a devout Catholic who attended Mass regularly at Notre Dame Catholic Church, in Waterville. She was a receptionist for Dr. Jean Bolduc and Dr. Lucien Pellerin.

Jacqueline was a very caring person. Her family meant everything to her. Jacqueline was a caretaker and was always taking care of people. Jacqueline also spent a lot of time praying for her family and others who she felt needed it.

Jacqueline was predeceased by her parents, Joseph and Bertha Rodrigue; her husband Roger Vigue; her brothers, Robert Rodrigue and Louis Rodrigue; her sister Constance Rodrigue; brother and sisters-in-law, Mag and Lawrence Vigue, and brothers-in-law-, Russel Marquis and David Starbird.

Jacqueline is survived by her sons, James Vigue and wife Jane, Thomas Vigue and wife Vickie; her daughters, Mary White and husband Roy, Patricia Violette and husband Joel; her sisters, Gabrielle Marquis and Claudette Starbird; her sister-in-law, Marge Rodrigue; her brother, Eugene Rodrigue and wife Sue, where she was also a mother to Eugene and Claudette after their mother had passed; her grandchildren, Cary Colwell and husband Bob, Tony Violette, Melanie Smith and husband Justin, Robbie Violette and wife Abby, Brad White and wife Jasmine, Erica Millett and husband Tyler, Terri Hall and husband Rob, Mike Starbird and his wife Amy; and several great- grandchildren; nieces and nephews.

Family and friends are asked to visit on Friday, December 13, from 7 to 9 p.m., at Gallant Funeral Home, 10 Elm St., Waterville. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, December 14, at Notre Dame Catholic Church, 116 Silver St., Waterville.

Arrangements are under the direction and care of Gallant Funeral Home.

An online guestbook may be signed, condolences and memories shared at

In lieu of flowers donations in Jacqueline’s name can be made to a charity of your choice.


COOPERS MILLS – Estalea Gurganious, 70, of Coopers Mills, passed away on Thursday, November 21, 2019. She was born in Palatka, Florida, on August 21, 1949, the daughter of Virginia and Raleigh Gurganious.

She graduated from Englewood High School, in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1968.

At the Country Manor Nursing Home where she resided, she was often referred to as “a little ray of sunshine,” by those who knew her. Some of her favorite activities there were playing Bingo, doing puzzles, and listening to music from visiting groups.

She attended The First United Pentecostal Church and the Apostolic Church, both in Augusta. She loved reading and listening to the Bible and was never afraid to witness to others around her of the relationship she had with Jesus Christ.

She also enjoyed and looked forward to visits with her son and daughter and their family.

She was formerly employed as a CNA both in Jacksonville, Florida and Gardiner, Maine.

She is survived by her daughter, Virginia Jones and husband Gary, of Palermo; son, Jerry Davis and wife Michelle, of Augusta; grandchildren, Kaylah Blazon and husband Jeremy, of Union; Abigail Jones and fiancé Chris Cory, of Palermo and Belfast; Rebekah Davis and Ryan Davis, both of Augusta; brother, Caston Gurganious and wife Linda, of Gainsville, Florida; brother, Carroll Gurganious, of Jacksonville, Florida; sister, Naomi Bradshaw and husband Tim, of Collierville, Tennessee. She also has several nieces, nephew, grand nieces and nephews.

She is predeceased by her sister, Pat Guynn; her brother, Kenneth Gurganious; her brother, Jimmy Burney; and parents, Virginia and Raleigh Gurganious.

Donations, in her memory, may be made to


WATERVILLE – Edmund G. Boucher, 96, passed away Saturday, November 30, 2019, at the Maine Veteran’s Home, in Augusta. He was born February 4, 1923, in Biddeford, the son of Ephren and Bertha (Lemire) Boucher.

He was educated in the Catholic schools of Biddeford then attended the University of Maine at Orono, graduating in 1950. He was a veteran who proudly served his country in the United States Army Air Force as a second lieutenant during World War II until his honorable discharge. He was employed for many years as a chemical engineer (chemist) for various companies including Pfizer. After retirement, he worked as a chemical engineer all over the world helping companies set up equipment. He was a member of the American Legion and American Chemical Society. He enjoyed traveling, reading, and picking berries.

Edmund is survived by sister, Muriel Martel, of Biddeford; stepsons, Kevin Baker and wife Penney, of Mt Vernon, Greg Baker and wife Paula, of Smithfield; and many nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his companion and wife, Marylin (Baker) Boucher, in March 2019.

A graveside service will be held at the Maine Veteran’s Cemetery, in Augusta, in the spring of 2020 at the convenience of the family.

In lieu of flowers, friends wishing may make donations in Edmund’s memory to a charity of their choice.

Arrangements under the direction and care of Dan & Scott’s Cremation & Funeral Service, 445 Waterville Road, Skowhegan, ME 04976.


CHINA – George Francis Balbo, 69, of China, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, December 9, 2019, following a brief and courageous battle with an aggressive form of cancer, succumbing less than four weeks after his initial diagnosis and leaving his broad circle of family and friends shocked and heartbroken at his passing.

Born and raised in the Cleveland, Ohio, area, George grew up in a large family as one of 12 children, graduating from Lakewood High School in 1968.

In 1971 he began dating his future wife, Mary (Eiben) and soon after they followed one of his sisters to Maine to live in the Twitchell Hill community in Montville.

Beginning his career as a machinist, George also worked at various times as a firetower watchman, farmhand, roofer, surveyor’s assistant and more, but most of his career was as a talented, self-taught, and self-employed carpenter.

By 1975 George and Mary were married and had settled in China, where George, over the years, transformed their 1780s, one-room house into a multi-story, hand-built, off-grid home. Accomplished gardeners and homesteaders, George and Mary had huge gardens where they grew and preserved a large part of their year’s supply of vegetables, leaving surplus for neighbors at their roadside stand.

George’s kind and loving nature drew people to him. Having survived an abusive childhood, George found sobriety and mental health in his early 30s; his openness about his challenges and successes drew admiration and inspired many others. He worked tirelessly every day and was strong and fit until his illness. He was a legendary storyteller at any gathering and especially around his dining room table. He had an innate ability to make people feel comfortable and cherished. He had an expansive memory and a fact or song lyric (usually rock or blues) ready for any situation. He was charming, hilarious, and had an insatiable curiosity about others and the world in general. He rarely met a stranger who didn’t become a friend after their first meeting.

George was a voracious reader and a seemingly endless fountain of knowledge. Whenever someone (usually his younger daughters) would doubt something he said, he’d always say, “Don’t believe me? Look it up.” And 99 percent of the time he would be right. George had a special understanding and love of trees and the natural world. Two of his other great loves were Native American history and spirituality, and classic cars and motorcycles.

George is survived by his wife, Mary Balbo; daughters, Angela Balbo and fiancé Michael Januska, of Cleveland, Ohio, and Jane Balbo and husband Aaron Burk, of Athens, Ohio; son, Jason Hooper and wife Brittney, of Cleveland, Ohio; daughters, Cari Balbo and husband Michael Maines, of Palermo, and Anna Balbo Baldwin and husband Thomas Baldwin, of South Portland; grandsons, Sam, Oliver, and namesake George; 16 siblings and step-siblings, along with their spouses; nieces, nephews and cousins; his Aunt Dolores.

There will be a celebration of George’s life on the summer solstice, 2020. His family asks that if you have stories and thoughts of George to share that you please consider emailing them to to be read at his memorial and to help his loved ones heal from their loss.


PALERMO – Beverly F. Archer, 92, passed away on Tuesday, December 10, 2019, at Alfond Center for Health, in Augusta, following a brief illness. Beverly “Bev” (Foster) Archer was born on March 12, 1927, at home on the Foster Farm, in Palermo.

In 1944, Beverly graduated from Erskine Academy, in China. During her senior year Beverly met, and began dating Claude “Kay” Archer, of Liberty. Kay would be the love of Beverly’s life. On March 26, 1949, Beverly and Kay were married at her family home, in Palermo, and from that day forth they would spend the next 67 years together.

Beverly and Kay were born adventurers. Following their marriage, they traveled and explored wherever work opportunities took them, including points in Maine, Montana, Pennsylvania and even Bogota, Columbia. It was in Bogota their daughter Jan B. Archer was born in 1955.

Beverly and Kay returned to Palermo in 1956. In 1957 they had built the home they would live in for the next 62 years. Eight years later, on June 17, 1964, their son Jeffrey K. Archer, was born.

Beverly was a wonderful homemaker and master cook. The family will forever hold dear all of her special dishes and baked goods, many of which became the traditional centerpieces to our family gatherings and celebrations.

Beverly was a loyal friend. Beverly was a dependable neighbor and community member. She was always quick to lend a helping hand. In younger years, Beverly served as a 4-H leader, a den mother for the cub scouts, and a school board member. She also served as a member of the Palermo Women’s Extension, the Sheepscot Fish & Game Club, and the Palermo Historical Society. But perhaps her most favorite involvement was that of the annual Tibbetts family reunion.

Beverly was resilient, strong-minded, and had a whole lot of good-old-fashioned common sense. She was a cherished wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and mother-in-law. Beverly was the beloved foundation and heart center of her family.

On December 10, 2019, surrounded by family, Beverly passed away at the age of 92 at the Alfond Center for Health in Augusta, following a brief hospital stay. Beverly will be deeply missed by her entire family. We are all so very grateful for having had her in our lives.

Beverly was preceded in death by her husband Kay, her mother Clara Holloway Foster, her father Stanley E. Foster, and her twin brothers, Stanton Foster and Stanley Foster Jr.

Beverly is survived by her daughter Jan, of Palermo, her son Jeffrey and his wife Lisa, of Brooks; five grandchildren, Sarah Cobb, of China, Joshua Haiss, of Gorham, Audrey Nale, of Waterville, Frannie Archer, of Palermo, and Jacob Archer, of Brooks; and ten great-grandchildren, Kay Grady, Clara Grady, Kenneth Cobb, Carden Cobb, Colette Cobb, Jack Lyons, Lincoln Haiss, Anna Nale, Elizabeth Nale and Thomas Nale III.

A springtime graveside service is planned for Beverly at the Branch Mills Cemetery, in China. A date and time for this service has not yet been set.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

Arrangements are under the care of Plummer Funeral Home, 983 Ridge Road, Route 32, Windsor, Maine.

Condolences, photos and stories may be shared at


WINSLOW – Just three days shy of her 89th birthday, Patricia Brann Paradis passed away on Thursday, December 12, 2019. She was born in York on December 15, 1930, the daughter of William and Florence Brann.

She grew up in Augusta and later graduated from Morse High School, in Bath, where she met her high school sweetheart Bill. In 1950, Bill and Pat were married in Savannah, Georgia, where her husband served in the U.S. Army.

Pat lived in Winslow for over 50 years where she raised her family. She was a homemaker and babysat numerous children over the years. Her home on Marie Street was always open to family and friends. All who stopped by always felt welcomed and at home.

Pat was a loving and unselfish woman who always felt strongly about caring for others, donating to the church and many charities. She enjoyed country music, arts and crafts such as sewing, knitting, stain-glass, tole painting and gardening, but her biggest enjoyment was time spent with her family. She was the mastermind behind every successful family gathering; spending many summer weekends barbecuing by the pool side with family and friends.

Pat is survived by two sons, Chuck Paradis, of Fairfield, John Paradis and his wife, Debbie, of Litchfield, two daughters, Patty Paradis and fiancé Steve Libold, of Waterville, and Judy and husband, Jeff Berard, of Oakland; 10 grandchildren: Chris Berube, Nichole Hoague, Tiffany Winchenbach, Justin Paradis, Tasha Donor, Peter Paradis, Lindsey Troxell, Cameron Berard, Ryan Berard, pre-deceased by Alisha Lynne Allen; and 13 great-grandchildren: Hunter, Hayden, Ethan, Oryanna, Isabella, Charlie, Michael Jr, Darby, Adrien, Brooklyn, Aiden, Jaxson and William; many nieces and nephews.

At Pat’s request there will be no funeral services. There will be a private committal service with her immediate family.

Arrangements are under the direction and care of Gallant Funeral Home, 10 Elm St., Waterville.

An online guestbook may be signed, condolences and memories shared at


ALBION – Brian L. Clark, 66, of Worcester, Massachusetts, and formerly of Albion passed away Thursday, December 12, 2019, following a short, but strong fight with cancer. Brian was born in Waterville on July 6, 1953, and was raised in Albion.

Brian was predeceased by his parents Leslie (“Pal”) and Carol Clark, of Albion. He is survived by daughter Jessica and her husband Scott Boulanger, of Manchester, New Hampshire; his siblings Sandra and her husband Lars Jonassen, of Albion, Steven and his wife Janice, of Eagle Pass, Texas, and Cathy Clark and Sharon Arnenson, of Allen, Texas; stepdaughters Judith and her husband Cliff Sales, Jennie and her husband Matt Keane, Greta and her husband Jason Gray, and Elizabeth “Liddy” and her husband Brian Tupper; aunt Barbara Knight, of Albion.

Brian graduated from Colby College, in Waterville, and went into a career in computer sales. He found a second career at L.L. Bean, in Maine, in customer service where he happened upon a long-lost friend on one of his late-night calls. He later moved to Worcester, Massachuseets, to marry Vicky and worked, until the time of his illness, at The Home Depot in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, where he made many close friends.

Brian was a lifelong fan of Boston sports teams and jumped at any chance to attend a game. He enjoyed golfing, spending time on Cape Cod, visits to Albion and vacations to Sanibel Island. Brian loved a good joke, an episode of Blue Bloods or a Dairy Queen blizzard at any time. His life was well lived.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in honor of Brian to the charity of your choice.


SIDNEY – Judy R. Stevens, 55, died on Friday, December 13, 2019, following a valiant fight with cancer. Judy was born in Lewiston on May 11, 1964, to Philip and Alexina (Gagnon) Cyr. She attended Holy Cross School, in Lewiston, and then attended and graduated from Lisbon High School. Judy worked in several retail and clerical positions during her lifetime. While working at Maine Industrial, in Augusta, she met and married Glenn Stevens. They shared a home in Sidney, where they were married in August 2012.

Judy loved spending time with family and her beloved pets. She doted on her grandchildren either related or “adopted.” She was always ready to share her talents of crocheting, cross stitching and quilting in gifts to a newborn member of the family or friend or as wedding gifts to many lucky couples. Judy was a kind-hearted person and never hesitated to help anyone in need. Her compassion, love and many talents will be profoundly missed.

Judy is survived by her husband, Glenn Stevens; her son, Devin Chamberland, of Lewiston; her stepdaughter, Kirsten and her husband, Ryan Grobosky, of Syracuse, New York; and a stepson, Eric Stevens, of Pittsfield; grandchildren Mayson Ciarfella, Rowen and Phoebe Grobosky and the many nieces and nephews; her mother, Alexina; her sister, Debra Adams; brothers Ken Cyr and Randy Cyr.

Judy was predeceased by her father, Philip Cyr and her son Jeremy Ciarfella.

A celebration of Judy’s life will be celebrated at the Slovak Club, 26 Avery Street, Lisbon Falls, Maine, on January 18, 2020, from noon – 6 p.m.

In lieu of flowers please make a donation to the American Cancer Society in her memory.


WINSLOW – Gary L. Morrison, 70, of Winslow, passed away on Wednesday, December 18, 2019, following a long and courageous battle with cancer. Gary was born May 28, 1949, in Gardiner, son of Andrew and Eva (Hamlin) Morrison.

He was educated in Winslow schools and graduated from Winslow High School in 1968. He went on to graduate from Central Maine Vocational Technical Institute, (CMVTI), in Auburn in 1970 with a degree in automotive technology. On August 8, 1970, Gary married his high school sweetheart, Suzon Hussey.

He worked for Advanced Auto, in Auburn, Lewiston Auto Sales, in Lewiston, and Agway, in Fairfield, before being hired by New England Telephone Company in February 1972 as a mechanic. He retired from the phone company in February 1997 after 25 years of service.

He had his own handyman business for a short time before he went back to school to become an EMT. After he got his EMT license in 1999 he worked for Windsor Ambulance for one year before being hired by Delta Ambulance, in Waterville in 2000. He retired from Delta in November 2015. For the next year or so Gary drove dump truck and tractor trailer, especially enjoying the time he spent on the road with his son, Chad. During all these years Gary remained an on-call firefighter with Winslow Fire Department and was a member of the newly-formed Fire Police Unit and also volunteered as an EMT for the Special Olympics at Sugarloaf for eight years.

Gary is survived by his wife Suzon; his mother Eva Morrison Coombs; special brother of the heart, Mike Henry and wife Terri, of Virginia; foster brother David Christian and wife Jo Jo, of Oregon; brother Terry Morrison and wife Lil, of Madison; half-brothers Anthony Chandler and wife Laura, of Woolwich; Robert Chandler and wife Martha, of Harpswell, and Harold Chandler III, of New Mexico; half-sister Susan Hurley and husband Bill, of California; his sons, Cory Morrison, of Winslow, Michael Morrison and wife Kristi, of Waterville, and Chad Morrison and wife Shannon, of Fairfield; eight grandchildren, Austin Morrison, of Colorado, Brittany Harris and husband Cobey, of Kansas, Amanda Morrison Bonn, of Kansas, Aidan and Nadia Morrison, of Waterville, and Landon, Levi and Liam Morrison, of Fairfield; in-laws Peggy Hussey, of New Hampshire, Tracy Hussey and fiance David, of Winslow, Erin Dyer and husband Scott, of Winslow, Peter Hussey and wife Verna, of Winslow, and Patrick Hussey, of New Hampshire; many nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, one great-great-nephew and one great-great niece; several cousins.

He was predeceased by his father Andrew Morrison, stepfather Robert Coombs, foster brother Robert Henry, sister-in-law Kelly Pearson, brother-in-law Michael Hussey and granddaughter Avery Rose Morrison.

In lieu of flowers the family is requesting donations be made to Winslow Fire Department, 16 Benton Ave, Winslow or Delta Ambulance, 29 Chase Ave, Waterville.


WATERVILLE – Randon “Randy” Chester McKay, 80, passed away, at Oak Grove Center, in Waterville, on Thursday, December 19, 2019. He was born June 11, 1939, at the Long Pond Railway Station, the eldest son of five children to Chester and Joan (Ferland) McKay.

He graduated from Higgins Classical Institute, in 1957, and the New England School of Art, in 1960. In 1979, he married Danielle Campbell, at the Sacred Heart Church, in Waterville. He was employed for many years as a salesman at various stores including leather goods, home goods, wallpaper and paint and retired from JC Penney.
Randy was a member of Notre Dame Catholic Church, in Waterville, and loved to tinker on radios, TVs and anything he could fix. It didn’t matter what came into Randy’s life, he always was good natured and had a smile on his face. He loved to watch old movies, and especially enjoyed family gatherings. He perceived his “cup as half full.” He was a wonderful person.

He is survived his wife of 40 years, Danielle (Campbell) McKay, of Waterville; two sisters, Merlene Ambulos and husband Nicholas, of Skowhegan, Terry Vioilette and husband William, of Waterville; many nieces, nephews and cousins; an aunt, Beatrice Basil.

He was predeceased by his parents, Chester and Joan (Ferland) McKay; brother, William McKay; and sister, Mona (McKay) Mayhew.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Saturday, January 4, 2020, at 11 a.m, at Notre Dame Catholic Church, Silver Street, Waterville.

In lieu of flowers, friends wishing may make donations in Randy’s memory to the Waterville Humane Society, 100 Webb Road, Waterville, ME 04901.

Arrangements under the direction and care of Dan & Scott’s Cremation & Funeral Service, 445 Waterville Road, Skowhegan, ME 04976.


WINDSOR – Todd Howard Hatch, 54, passed away Sunday, December 22, 2019, at his home, in Windsor, following a long and courageous battle with cancer. He was born in Damariscotta on December 10, 1965, to Kenneth L. Hatch II and Jean (Lewis) McInnis.

He graduated from Erskine Academy, in South China, and worked for Coutt’s Bros. Inc., for 34 years as a lead power lineman. He was a dedicated employee and loving husband, father and grandfather.

He was predeceased by his father Kenneth L. Hatch II.

Todd is survived by his wife of 34 years Deborah A. Hatch; two children, David E. Geschwendt and wife Katie, Matthew T. Hatch and girlfriend Michele Drew; a granddaughter Jubilee; his mother Jean L. McInnis; brothers, sisters and many nieces, nephews and great nieces and great nephews.

A private Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.

Arrangements are in the care of Staples Funeral Home and Cremation Care, 53 Brunswick Avenue, Gardiner, Maine.

Condolences, memories and photos may be shared with the family on the obituary page of the Staples Funeral Home website:

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to MaineGenerral Hospice, PO Box 828, Waterville, Maine 04903, and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, Memorial Processing, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis,Tennessee, 38105-9959.


OAKLAND – Curtis A. Mueller, 64, passed away on Friday, December 13, 2019. He was born on February 8, 1955, in St. Louis, Missouri, to Arnold and Gladys Mueller.

Curt attended Lutheran High School North, in St. Louis, and Southwestern Missouri State University before completing a bachelor’s degree at Utah State University. For over 30 years, he owned and operated an independent claim adjusting company based in central Maine.

Curt loved the Lord and His Word, and it thrilled him to play bluegrass and gospel music at local churches and nursing homes. For many years, he played the banjo with his family in a band that performed throughout the country.

He enjoyed fishing, cooking, gardening, exploring his beloved Maine, and spending time with his children and grandchildren.

He is survived by his parents Arnold and Gladys; his children, Tom, Annah, Bob, Laura, Sarah, John, and George; four grandchildren; and brothers, Greg and Dan.

Per Curt’s wishes, no service will be held.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in his memory to First Choice Pregnancy Center in Waterville, Maine.


OAKLAND – Brian Lee Michaud, 56, of Oakland, passed away suddenly while working, on Monday, December 16, 2019. Brian was born on March 18, 1963, at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, the son of Dora and Charles H. Michaud Jr.

Brian graduated from Stearns High School, in Millinocket, in 1981. Following high school, he joined the United States Navy, serving his country with pride. Love of country topped his priority list.

Brian was passive, sweet, funny, and giving. He will be remembered for his hard work ethic and the fact he could fix anything. He was always there to lend a hand for anyone. He was happy to be known as a “red neck” and a proud Trump supporter. Brian was a delivery assistant at NRF, in Augusta, at the time of his death.

Brian was especially proud of his son, Joshua Michaud, for his service in the United States Army and carrying on the family tradition of serving his country. He was looking forward to spending time with him over the holidays.

Brian enjoyed camping, fishing, hunting, wrestling with Josh and cousin, Mikey, and spending time with friends and his dogs.

Brian was predeceased by his father, Charles H. Michaud Jr., on August 12, 2006.

Brian is survived by his son Joshua Michaud of Tampa, Florida; mother Dora Michaud, of Oakland; sister Andrea Stevens, of Alaska; brothers, Charles Stevens, of Arizona, and Ed Stevens, of Idaho; his girlfriend Beckey Washburn, of Oakland; uncles, Maynard, Michael and Terry Michaud; also cousins, Beth Michaud-Tillson who was like his little sister, cousins, Mikey, Luigi and Jason Michaud, Vina Walker and Digna Cournoyer; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

A celebration of life was held on December 29, 2019.

An online guestbook may be signed, and memories shared at

Arrangements are by Wheeler Funeral Home & Cremation Care, 26 Church St., Oakland.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be sent to the Maine Veterans Home, 310 Cony Road, Augusta, ME 04330.

Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund receives grant

The Augusta Nature Education Center was recently awarded a $3,000 grant from the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund. This enabled the Nature Center to enhance visitorsʼ experience by replacing boardwalks, installing new signage, and improving and updating the trail map.

The Center is managed and co-owned by the Augusta Nature Club, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. The Nature Center is comprised of 179 acres of quiet woods, beautiful fields of wildflowers, ponds, granite quarries (which supplied the stones for the downtown Federal Building), a brook, and five miles of trails. Access is free and open to the public during daylight hours 365 days a year for non-motorized activities such as walking, jogging, biking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, photography, birding and nature watching.

Because of its unique location, within a mile of Augusta and adjacent to Cony High School and residential areas, it is used by local schools as part of their Physical Education and Science studies. The two mile running track is used by cross country teams for their meets and is available to all.

Operating since the 1960s, the Nature Center is a true gem and is often referred to as Augustaʼs “diamond in the rough.”

For more information, or to download a trail map, please visit the website at or find them on Facebook at Augusta Nature Education Center.

Kennebec Historical Society to hear from Jeffrey Ryan on the hermit Jim Whyte

When Jim Whyte settled outside the slate mining town of Monson, Maine, in 1895, people hardly knew what to make of him. And almost 130 years later, we still don’t. A world traveler that spoke six languages fluently, Whyte came to town with sacks full of money and a fierce desire to keep to himself. It was clear that Whyte was hiding from something – enough to make even the FBI to eventually come looking. But even the Feds couldn’t imagine how Whyte, who lost every penny he had when World War I broke out, amassed another fortune before he died. Based on the true story, Hermit follows one man’s quest to discover all he can about Whyte’s secret life before it’s too late.

Jeffrey Ryan

KHS speaker, Maine based author, and photographer Jeffrey Ryan has a contagious passion for exploring the outdoors, particularly on foot. Jeff has hiked thousands of miles including his first “trip of a lifetime,” a 6-1/2-month hike on the Pacific Crest Trail. In 1985, Jeff began “section hiking” the Appalachian Trail with a childhood friend, a journey that would take 28 years to complete and culminated in his first book, Appalachian Odyssey: A 28-year hike on America’s trail. Intrigued by the question of how the legendary trail came into being, he researched and wrote his second book, Blazing Ahead: Benton MacKaye, Myron Avery and the Rivalry that Built the Appalachian Trail. His latest book, a historical novel entitled, Hermit: The Mysterious Life of Jim Whyte, is centered in Monson, Maine, on the Appalachian Trail. When he is not researching and writing, Ryan explores the backroads of the USA and Canada in his vintage 1985 VW camper.

The Kennebec Historical Society January Presentation is co-sponsored by the Maine State Library and is free to the public (donations gladly accepted). The presentation will be followed by some light refreshments and take place on Wednesday, January 15, 2020, at 6:30 p.m., at the Maine State Library, located at 230 State Street, in Augusta.

CHINA: New police chief, patrolman selected

by Mary Grow

At a short Dec. 23 meeting, China selectmen appointed a town police chief and met and appointed a new patrolman.

Craig Johnson, who has been serving in China’s part-time police department for almost two years, is the new chief. Town Manager Dennis Heath said the appointment means Johnson will be in charge of scheduling and similar administrative matters.

Jeremy Willis, a Skowhegan police officer and Information Technology Director for Somerset County, will become a China patrol officer. Johnson, a Somerset County deputy sheriff, works with Willis and recommended him; and Heath said Maine Corrections Commissioner Randall Liberty recommended Johnson as chief.

The manager again said he plans to suggest a change in local policing when he, selectmen and budget committee members begin discussion of China’s 2020-2021 budget in January. Earlier in 2019 he sought cost estimates for one full-time police officer.

China now has five police officers, Heath said, who work a total of 26 hours a week. State policemen and county sheriff’s deputies also cover the town, rotating every two weeks.

Selectmen heard two brief reports, from Tom Michaud of the Tax Increment Financing Committee on plans for work on fire roads around China Lake and from board member Wayne Chadwick on his discussion – by invitation – with fire chiefs about town funding. Chadwick emphasized that he did not speak for the board during the discussion.

According to the town website, China selectmen meet again Monday evening, Jan. 6.