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THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF SLIDELL

Vol. 87 October 2017

WE KEEP IT FRESH

SAY KEEP IT POSITIVE


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Paid for by the Committee to Elect Alan Zaunbrecher

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Legal Experience from A to Z FEW COME AS WELL PREPARED AS ALAN ZAUNBRECHER TO BE YOUR NEXT DISTRICT COURT JUDGE. THE DEPTH OF HIS STELLAR LEGAL EDUCATION, COMBINED WITH HIS BREADTH OF LEGAL EXPERIENCE, IS UNMATCHED. Alan brings to the bench 38 years’ experience in federal and state courtrooms handling more than 200 civil trials. He has served as a Louisiana special assistant attorney general and an assistant district attorney in St. Tammany and Washington Parishes. He is admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court and 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. For the past 18 years, Alan has been a professionally certified mediator in more than 2,000 complex litigation cases. Respected by his peers, he is one of very few in the state to receive the prestigious Pro Bono Publico Award for his volunteer legal services to the poor. It is rare that someone with Alan’s qualifications elects to forgo his private legal career and dedicate it to public service. Perhaps it’s his dedication to our state and community and the impact he’s had on everything from our economy and environment to our youth and to people in need.

Alan Zaunbrecher

possesses the balanced traits to be a great judge.

EARLY VOTING: Sep. 30 –Oct.7 ELECTION DAY:

October 14

Alan Zaunbrecher for Judge, 22nd JDC, Div. H

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PROUDLY ENDORSED BY:

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Editor’s Letter

This is me, after 16 chemo treatments, in September 2005. My hair had begun to regrow slightly because of skipping chemotherapy when the hospitals were closed after Hurricane Katrina. The complete picture shows me with a chainsaw in my hand, in my sister’s backyard in Slidell, cutting fallen trees after the storm. I was such a badass! I went on to have an additional 36 chemo treatments and, even though my body may have been a bit broken, my spirit never was. Every October, I remember this picture, this moment. I wrote about it in my third edition of Slidell Magazine back in 2010:

PO Box 4147 • Slidell, LA 70459

Kendra Maness

Editor/Publisher Slidell Magazine

October is nationally recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness month. During this month, pink ribbons will adorn car bumpers, jacket lapels, and even the shoes and gloves of the NFL players. The symbolism of this simple pink loop cannot be overstated. Everyone, EVERY SINGLE PERSON reading this now, knows someone who has had breast cancer. If not before now, then let me introduce myself and clarify – I am a “survivor.” Yep, that catchy, one-word wonder that means that I’ve had cancer and beat it. Actually, I don’t even like to say I’m a cancer survivor. Sure, I’ve got the scars and the t-shirts to prove it, but it’s not my preferred terminology. I did a lot more than “survive” cancer. I am a Cancer Conqueror. “Survivor” makes me think of someone scratching and fighting to stay alive – some poor, destitute soul reaching out with their last breath for salvation of some type. “Conqueror” conjures up images of Vikings or the great Roman army. Much more my style. I didn’t just barely squeeze by the cancer jaws of death. I stood atop that snout, held it open with my feet, jammed my fist down its throat, pulled its heart out of its chest, chewed it up and spit it out. Conqueror, indeed!

www.SlidellMag.com 985-789-0687

Kendra Maness - Editor/Publisher Editor@SlidellMag.com

Devin Reeson - Graphic Designer Graphics@SlidellMag.com Illustrations by: Zac McGovern www.HalMundane.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS EFOP, Kathleen DesHotel The Storyteller, John Case Portraits of Slidell, William Blackwell Pet Points, Jeff Perret, DVM The Cajun Navy, Kathleen DesHotel Go Beyond, Rose Marie Sand The Solar Eclipse, Donna Bush Crimmi-Mommly Insane, Leslie Gates Legal-Ease, Ronda M. Gabb Making Cents of Your Money, Mike Rich MikeRich@MyPontchartrain.com

Cover: “Cajun Navy” by Zac McGovern

SUBSCRIPTIONS: $39/YEAR

Cover Artist zac mcgovern This month’s cover artwork began to take shape as Slidell Magazine illustrator Zac McGovern viewed photos of the Cajun Navy during their rescue efforts in Houston. When asked to do the cover, he was a vocal and outspoken supporter and admirer of the Cajun Navy members, referring to them as “heroes.” The results can be seen in Zac’s poignant and achingly realistic cover illustration. Born in New Orleans and raised in Slidell, Zac has always had a love for cartoons and comics. He did editorial cartoons during his time at LSU, where he graduated with a degree in Literature. At Northshore High School in Slidell, he doodled in every single margin of every single note. This is how he learned to draw, along with Mrs. Nelle Landry’s art class, perhaps the most important class he’s ever taken. “Since 2010, I have been making comics of the underground variety, which we in that world refer to as ‘comix.’ I really believe I am just getting started, even though I have been drawing seriously for 7 years now. I contribute in some capacity to a number of underground publications when opportunities present themselves.” Zac lives in St. Tammany Parish with his wife and daughter, Penelope, who is the inspiration for his brilliantly illustrated and heartwarming comic “Li’l Loopy”. Zac also illustrates Slidell Magazine’s “Crimi-Mommly Insane” written by Leslie Gates. His colorful cross-hatch drawings follow along Leslie’s storyline and help to make each wonderful story into fantastic imagery eye-candy!

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Mary West Director of Marketing MaryWest2@aol.com 504-610-1051

You can view more of Zac’s artwork on his website: www.halmundane.com

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SEPTEMBER 2017

Extraordinarily Fascinating “Ordinary” People

Bobby Mayfield by Kathleen DesHotel

Editor's Note: Writer Kathleen DesHotel was delighted to interview Mr. Bobby Mayfield on April 17, 2017. The story was completed, photographed and edited and waiting to be published. Kathleen said, "He was alive, well, and beautiful in his heart and mind." Previously planned story content in the magazine delayed Mr. Mayfield's story for a few months. On August 11, 2017, Mr. Mayfield passed away from a sudden illness. We are so very sorry that he was not able to see his finished story in Slidell Magazine, but it is our honor to share it with his family and our community now.

omething about learning how to fish can lead a person to be patient and philosophical, and to learn to tell meaningful stories while sitting in a boat. Robert Mayfield, best known as Bobby, learned to fish from his dad, also Robert, who was a Slidell policeman. Actually, his dad was the first motorcycle policeman in Slidell.

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Not only did his dad teach him how to fish, he also told him how to build a wooden boat. This was his dad’s lucrative hobby that led to the sales of many boats over Bobby’s childhood. As they worked together, his dad would share insights about loyalty to family and being a good boy, as well as tell him stories about police work. In one story, he told him about being called to a bar room because the bartender saw a guy with a gun in a bag. When Officer Mayfield arrived on the scene, the guy shot at him through the door of the police car.

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Bobby explained the influence of his father’s words, “I must have listened well and been a pretty good kid because my parents never put limits on where I could go. Of course, Slidell was a small city back then, and everybody pretty much knew everybody.” He further clarified just how small by telling the names of the streets that were paved: Highway 11, Old Spanish Trail, and Carey

Street, where he was born in 1932 and grew up next door to his grandma’s house on the corner of Carey and Bilten Streets. “My friends never got into trouble. On weekends and when school was out over the summer, my dad leased a camp out in Indian Village. We swam, hunted, fished, and played. It was a good life,” he described. “We never went anywhere without finding someone to say ‘Hello’ to and have a conversation. Mostly, we walked everywhere we went,” he shared. His friends bonded by virtue of being with one another from first grade through high school. He attended two schools, Slidell Grammar and Slidell High School. They all graduated together in 1951. Interestingly, four remaining members from that class still meet, along with a couple from an earlier class. “Alan Davis, Larry Penton, Norma Rose Scogin, Charles Green and I, from the class of 1951, get together once a month at Piccadilly’s and talk about everybody we ever knew. No one gets left out of the gossip. Al and Betty Holden from an earlier class are cousins of my wife, and they come too.” Bobby met the love of his life, Phyllis Holden, when he was in high school. “I knew her brothers and met her through them; they were from the Bayou Liberty area. I guess it was love at first sight. After I graduated from Slidell High, I went right into the Navy and on to the 455’ long USS Monifee, a transport ship, during the Korean War. We ferried troops between Japan and Korea and within Korean waters close to the 38th parallel." During Bobby’s 5-year military tour, Phyllis kept a photo of him in his Navy uniform, and he traveled everywhere with a photo of her. While examining it, he explained, “It’s all scratched up, and that’s part of its history. I dropped it when I was packing to go home, and the shattered glass marked it all up. I kept it close to me anyway.”


Sandra Mayfield Browning remarked, “My mother and father fit together so well that I always wondered what one would ever do without the other. After my mother died in 2014, my hero was shaken. He was always the one who steadily took care of things, but always with my mother. No one ever saw one without the other.”

When he got home, they were married, got a house in Olde Towne, and became close partners for their entire marriage, raising children Robert, Sandra, and Scott. “We did everything together. In 1993, we made up our minds to say that we had vacationed in all fifty states. We made it to 48 states plus Alaska, Canada, and Nova Scotia. We put more than 100,000 miles on our motor home. We spent a whole month in Alaska. For beauty of scenery, Colorado was the prettiest with all those beautiful Rocky Mountains, lakes, wildlife. For people from Slidell, those mountains were gorgeous.” The only 2 states they missed were Wisconsin and Rhode Island. Phyllis and Robert also participated in square dancing from 1975 -1995 with the Tammany Twirlers, a group formed in 1962. He described this activity as, “Something Phyllis wanted to do, so we went and had a great time with many laughs and really good exercise to keep us in shape. She

wore her round skirts with petticoats, and I wore western shirts, big belt buckles, and boots.” There were levels of accomplishment from A1 to A3 and C1 to C3. At every level mastered, there was a new initiation. He recalled, “At one of those levels we danced with shoe boxes on our feet, and at a higher level I had to dress like a girl and my wife had to dress like a guy. Doing the promenade, allemande, and do-si-do in a skirt was a challenge,” he laughed. Another memorable event for Bobby was when he and Phyllis served as King and Queen of the Krewe de la Boutte Dominique, a civic and social organization organized in 1964 by the Ladies Altar Society of St. Genevieve’s Catholic Church. For decades, Dominique’s sparkling finery provided the conclusion for the Slidell Carnival season with its Lundi Gras procession at the Slidell Municipal Auditorium.

“To live as long as I have takes minding your own business and also good genes. My dad lived to be ninety. But when my wife died, it was tough going for a quite a while,” Bobby said. “Simple things hurt the most. It was the loneliness and the absence of small conversations and just looking at television together and talking about the show. She was a good woman who was patient, friendly, had a sense of humor, and was an organizer for everyday things. When we went on vacations, she’d make a calendar with everything to do on every day. Losing her certainly took the wind out of my sails.” He advises anyone who suffers such a loss to allow themselves to grieve, but to also find something on which to focus so that grief doesn’t become consuming. “I thought one day that I should find something I’d like doing, and I returned to the days when my father and I built boats together. I started building miniature replicas of pirogues with everything that would be inside them like the push pole, paddles, a shotgun, and rods and reels with tiny lures. Carving all these occupied my mind and enabled me to live.” The carved products are skillful and accurate in all respects. He uses whatever he can carve to create the tiny works that

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he sometimes gives away to relatives and friends. Eventually, his talents brought his creations from pirogues to flat boats (called Jon boats) and perfect little silver trailers that roll. Another, even bigger, part of his survival is time he spends with his two great-grandsons, Adam and Ryan Vaughan. “I enjoy working on projects with them; I like the time they spend here even if all they want to do is sit around and look at television. Looking forward to spending a day with them keeps me going.” Adam and Ryan love spending time with the man they call Pépère, French for Grandpa. Adam, 11, says, “I like to help him build little wooden boats and pirogues. He teaches me, and I like when he needs me. I go to his house on weekends because I know he is lonely since Mémère died. I also like going to First United Methodist Church with him on Sunday. Even though I have to get up early, it’s okay, because we go to breakfast after with his friends.”

Ryan, 16, says that Pépère is a great role model for him and his brother and that he loves doing projects with him and learning how to build things. “I once built a child’s rocking chair while he showed me how. No one believed that I really made it, but I did. Another time, he let me build a bird house that I painted purple. Among the many things I love about him is his patience with me and my brother even though we are both extra active. He says that we never drive him crazy.” The boys’ grandma with whom they live, Bennie Dupre-Roig, explains that Bobby is a wonderful man who has always truly loved his great-grandsons. “They are very special to him just as he is to them.” Booby's youngest son, Scott, sums him up succinctly, “Anyone who meets him knows that he is a good man who is patient, loving, and talented at repairing and doing just about everything well, except cooking. He sticks by people he cares about. What more could anyone ask for?”

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The staff of Slidell Magazine sends the Mayfield family our deepest sympathy and continuing prayers for comfort.

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OCTOBER

SAINTS AT DOLPHINS • 8:30AM

SAINTS VS LIONS • NOON

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TUE

COLUMBUS DAY

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Ambassador Meeting Zaman • Noon

Education Committee Meeting Chamber • 8:30am

23

Louisiana Economic Outlook: 2018 / 2019 featuring Dr. Loren C. Scott Harbor Center • 12-1pm

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9

31

24

17

10

ChamberONE Social Wine Market • 4:30-6:30pm

FLOCK A FRIEND • Benefits Jr. Auxiliary • October 1-29 Visit flockslidell.com for more info.

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MON

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EYP Luncheon Carretta's 11:30am-1pm

NOVEMBER

A Taste of Olde Towne Kick-off Farm-to-Table Wine Dinner Carey Street • 6-9pm

25

Free Workshop How to Market to the Federal Government Chamber Boardroom • 10am-12pm

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5

THU

Free Small Bus. Counseling By Appt • Chamber • 9am-3pm

Bras for a Cause Harbor Center • 6-9pm

Business After Hours Martketplace • 5-7PM

Free Small Bus. Counseling By Appt • Chamber • 1-4pm

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26

A Taste of Olde Towne Vintner Dinner 6:30-11pm

Business After Hours Sponsored by: Patton's, Patriot Title Iberia Bank & Pelican Pages Patton's • 5-7pm

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12

St. Tammany Parish Fair • October 4-7 St. Tammany Parish Fairgrounds • 9am-til

Chamber Luncheon Athena Award Harbor Center 11:30am-1pm

11

4

WED Olde Towne Pumpkin Fest First United Methodist 11am-4pm

3

A Taste of Olde Towne Premium Tasting • Wine Garden • 5-7pm A Taste of Olde Towne Grand Tasting • Chamber • 7-9pm

Mixed Media Art Exhibit Opening Reception City Hall Gallery • 7pm Show runs thru 12/16

Carey Street Crawl Olde Towne • 5-9:30pm

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Slidell Gun & Knife Show Harbor Center

Touch a Truck Fremaux Town Center 10am - 3pm

Rocky Horror Picture Show • Slidell Little Theatre • 8pm Rocky Horror Picture Show • Cutting Edge Theater • 8pm

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My School Color Run • Camp Salmen • 9am Antique Street Fair • Olde Towne • 10am-5pm

MacBeth • Slidell Little Theatre • 8pm Rocky Horror Picture Show • Cutting Edge Theater • 8pm

Slidell Food & Fun Fest • St. Margaret Mary

21

Midnight Madness Coed Softball Tournament October 20-22 • John Slidell Park

WHA Luncheon • Harbor Center Health Screen 10-11am : Lunch 11:30am

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20

MacBeth • Slidell Little Theatre • 8pm

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Wooden Boat Fest Madisonville • 10am-6pm 20th Annual Wild Things Public Policy Meeting Bayou Lacombe Center • 10am-4pm Chamber Boardroom • 8am Newcomers Craft Show Harbor Center • 11am-4pm 13

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SAT

Camellia City Smooth Jazz Festival Harbor Center • 11am-10pm MacBeth • Slidell Little Theatre • 8pm

Oak Harbor Golf Club

Chamber Golf Tournament

Celebrity Golf Tournament Beau Chene Country Club • 9am

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FRI

985-643-5678

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Sponsored by Slidell Mayoral Candidate Bruce Clement

Look for the RED Fleur de Lis to see all of the Chamber Events!

SAINTS VS BEARS • NOON

A Taste of Olde Towne Jazz Brunch • Chateau Bleu • 10:30am

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Antique Street Fair Olde Towne • 10am-5pm Bayou Jam Halloween Bash Heritage Park • 5:30-7:30pm

SAINTS AT PACKERS • NOON

MacBeth Slidell Little Theatre • 2pm

Slidell Food & Fun Fest St. Margaret Mary • 12-6pm

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Wooden Boat Fest Madisonville • 10am-6pm Newcomers Craft Show Harbor Center • 11am-4pm MacBeth Slidell Little Theatre • 2pm

Warrior Wing Cook-Off American Legion Post 185 11am-2pm

Camellia City Smooth Jazz Brunch Harbor Center • 11am-2pm

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Bayou Jam Michael Baptiste & Real Soul Heritage Park • 5:30-7:30pm

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SUN

2017

O C T O B E R


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Storyteller FOLLOW UP: TWO OLD STORIES REVISITED Over six years ago, I was asked to contribute a historical article for a new local publication that was known as Slidell Magazine. I knew if I did, the subjects covered would not be about who founded Slidell, or the Bienville and Iberville brothers that forayed across Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana. No! Those people have had enough written about them by writers more capable than me. I knew if I were to write a history section for this new publication, the characters and events covered would be about the forgotten people or happenings that seldom, if ever, had been written about. Yes, that is what I would do. That was 75 editions ago, and my subject matter has moved from history to short stories for the most part, but occasionally that investigative instinct still takes control.

Early on, I wrote a story about Captain Charles Butler McVay, which was reprinted here last month. It was my first rerun, and it was done intentionally. Even though I know one day my literary imagination will run dry, that was not the reason for the rerun. The purpose was to set the stage for this submission you are reading now. This is not a story. This is history, and it has become very personal to me. Also early on, I researched Arthur Chevrolet. I never wrote a story about Arthur Chevrolet, but I did tell his story for local groups who were interested in Slidell history. That was over five years ago. Breifly, Arthur Chevrolet was one of three brothers who built the Chevrolet automobile.

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They also were race car drivers in the infancy of the Indianapolis Speedway. One brother was killed racing, and to make the story very short, the other two suffered financial setback after financial setback. Arthur moved to Slidell to work for Higgins Industries during WWII. Just after the war, he took his own life at a residence on Carey Street. What an interesting story for a novice writer looking for something historical about Slidell. My preliminary research indicated that after his death, he was buried in an unmarked grave in a large cemetery in Indianapolis. I looked it up on findagrave.com and saw grave markers for his brothers Louis and Gaston. I continued to collect information, but never wrote the story.

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Two years after my first interest in the tale, a young journalist got wind of the story and researched it beyond where I had left off. His name is David Freese and he discovered that Arthur was, in fact, buried in Our Lady of Lourdes Cemetery in Slidell. I decided to revisit the Find A Grave website and discovered that a marker for Arthur Chevrolet was on a grave in Indianapolis, donated by the Indianapolis Speedway. Just to set the record straight, or maybe to have a little fun, I called the cemetery to inform them of the errors of their ways. Low and behold, after some research, they agreed. The grave under Arthur’s marker was that of Arthur Chevrolet, but not the subject of this story. That grave belonged to his son. Some time passed, and I got a call from Brian Hasler and Mark Eutsler. They represent the American Racing Memorial Association and it was their desire to bring that misplaced marker to its rightful place in Slidell. This they did.

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Shortly afterward, they called me and told me they had located Arthur’s grandson who was living in Indianapolis and was at the funeral in Slidell in 1946. Would I like to visit and interview him? Yes, I would. However, I could hardly financially justify the trip to Indianapolis, so I politely declined. Within a day of this offer, I received another invitation. The second invitation was for the annual reunion of the survivors of the U.S.S. Indianapolis. It, too, was in Indianapolis, and it was being held at the same time I had been invited to visit with Arthur Chevrolet's grandson, Harry Wiliford. I had invested a good bit of time in these two stories, but more than time, I had become emotionally attached to the Chevrolet family, Captain McVay, and the survivors of the Indianapolis. My wife Brenda and I headed to Indiana. If you are a reader of my submissions, you have heard me say that before I can write, I must have the feeling. I must see the emotional images before I can put them on paper. A few weeks ago, in Indianapolis, I saw the emotional images. That was the left side of the equation. Now let me attempt to put them on paper and solve the right side. ********** I will start with the reunion of the survivors of the U.S.S. Indianapolis. It was the 72nd anniversary of the sinking of the ship and the horrible carnage that followed in the seas of the South Pacific. Out of approximately 1,196 sailors and Marines, only 317 survived.

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The story of this event was made popular in the 70s when it was told by Quint in the movie Jaws. That is when the masses heard about it. Now that is a shame. I am not going to retell the story of the U.S.S. Indianapolis. I hope you read last month’s Slidell Magazine. If not, check the internet or read a few fine (and some not-so-fine) books on the subject. My interest, and only interest at one time, was the story of its captain, Charles Butler McVay III. After his retirement, he became a resident of Slidell, and his ashes were scattered on Bayou Liberty, along with his wife Louise's. He was a prime candidate for my history related magazine submission. The ship was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine shortly after it had delivered the major components of the atomic bomb to Tinian Island. The Navy had lost track of the ship, another story, and did not send out rescue. The approximately 800 men that went into the water suffered exposure, thirst, hunger and shark attacks for five days. When help arrived, mostly by accident, only 317 would ultimately survive.

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It was the largest Maritime Navy disaster in U.S. history as for the loss of lives. Sadly, it happened only two weeks prior to the war's end, thanks to the lethal cargo they delivered. Brenda and I arrived in Indianapolis about noon on Thursday. We were one of the first to arrive, other than the organizers. I was directed to a gentleman who seemed to be overwhelmed with all the duties that are inherent in putting together a large reunion or a convention. I assumed he was a professional convention promoter. I was incorrect. He was the promoter of this event, but more importantly, he was the son of a survivor. His name was Jim Belcher. I had my doubts if there would be enough educational or organized activities to entertain me. It was beginning to look like a family reunion and we were not family. But that would soon change. The first night, I met all seven survivors that were in attendance. All are ninety years old plus, but all were mentally sharp and willing to talk. Their attention was in high demand, and there wasn't a lot of opportunity to spend much time with any specific one. That was good, the reunion was for them, not for us. I learned just to stand by, because each person that greeted them would ask some pertinent question. I was getting a better and more varied interview than I could ever have done myself. To my surprise, all seven survivors had no problem reflecting on the event. This puzzled me. The conclusion I have drawn from what they went through, to being at this reunion, I believe to be as follows. No one specifically told me this. This is just my opinion: What went on in the minds of these 317 for the first fifteen years after the sinking? I understand they did not discuss it much. Some children never knew their fathers were on the U.S.S. Indianapolis. Bad memories are sometimes best forgotten. I imagine they lived with a bit of guilt. Why me Lord? What did I do to be so lucky? They did not have any reunions and did not communicate as a group to any great extent those first fifteen years. I think you can attribute that to less affordable transportation, poorer


communication, the labors of life such as raising a family, holding down a job, etc. The first reunion was in 1960. It was the only reunion their captain, Captain McVay, attended. McVay had been court-martialed for the sinking of his ship after the war. Next to the tragedy of the sinking, this was one of the most bizarre casualties of the war. McVay did not deserve a court-martial but the Navy had to blame someone. That too is another story. There is one thing for sure, the men at this reunion loved their captain.

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What I was not aware of was that the reunion also honored the rescuers, the crew members, and the lost at sea. The stories told by the rescuers are almost as dramatic as those told by the survivors themselves. Much that I learned came from a documentary named U.S.S. Indianapolis, The Legacy. It was ten years in the making and featured live testimony of the survivors and rescuers. The film was produced by Sarah Vladic and Melainie Johnson. It is my desire to get the legal releases to have this film shown in Heritage Park here in Slidell. We like lagniappe in Louisiana, and another friend of the U.S.S. Indianapolis, Brian Fruit, has produced a play that I understand is very moving. I have a theater group working to bring that to Slidell also. Stand by because they both will be worth the ride. Now I want you to meet seven of the dearest men that Brenda and I have met in years. Please understand, there was a lot of demand on their time, and just because I only give brief comments about some, does not diminish their heroism, love for their country or love for their fellow survivors. Edgar Harrell It was common for Marines to be stationed on ships during WWII. There were 29 on the U.S.S. Indianapolis. In addition to providing security for the ship, some were there to guard the cargo. That was Edgar’s job, or at least one of them. He was told that, if the ship were to be abandoned, the cargo had priority in the life boats over human life. Thankfully it did not come to that. He tells me that he had no idea the nature of the cargo, and did not believe that Captain McVay did either. Wonderfully delightful man. Edgar was 93. He entered service in Kentucky and now lives in Clarksville. Richard (Dick) Thelan Mr. Personality, a bigger than life character that I suppose never met a stranger. Only eighteen years old at the time of the sinking, he is an interesting fellow. Personalities change, but I bet he was an inspiration, a cheerleader type, during the ordeal. He is from Lansing, Michigan and is 90 years old. James Jarvis James is now 95 years old. Just before rescue, he made it to a raft with nine men on board. He knew two of them. He has always wondered who the others were. He was rescued by the U.S.S. Doyle whose commanding officer, by coincidence, was a relative of Captain McVay’s wife Louise. Arthur Leenerman Arthur is 93 years old at present. He entered the service and

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was assigned to the U.S.S. Indianapolis in 1943. He was in eight of the battles the ship was involved in, including Iwo Jima and Okinawa. For his rescue, a plane piloted by Adrian Marks landed, against orders, in the water and Arthur made it to the plane. He then lost consciousness. He was the last to be taken from the plane, as they thought he was dead. Arthur lives in Illinois.

wife, Norma, at the banquet. A delightful person. Harold is now chairman of the survivors group.

John Woolston John is a very interesting character. He remained in the Navy for 32 years. He was a graduate of naval architecture from MIT and was an officer aboard the U.S.S. Indianapolis. He had toured the Indianapolis sometime prior to being assigned to it and even had a model of it. He was from Washington, but now lives in Hawaii. After retirement from the military, he worked for several contractors in ship design. He is now 93 years old.

Brenda and I went to this reunion thinking this would be the last one. We would be part of history. Jim Belcher assures the attendees that this is not the case. There will be a reunion at least one more year after the last survivor passes. Atta boy Jim.

Harold Bray A native of Michigan, he enlisted at 17 years of age. He recalls the joy he felt when he saw bomber pilot, Captain Gwinn, wiggle his wings indicating they had been found. The survivors call him their Angel. I had the pleasure of sitting close to Captain Gwinn’s

There were many touching moments at this reunion. For me, the most touching was the memorial service. A bell was rung in memorium. Patriotic songs were played and short speeches given. Yes, there were prayers also.

Since 1960, these men have had a change of heart. Most are willing to share their ordeal. I think the purpose is certainly not self glory, but a passing of patriotism. I also think they may feel as if they are a walking symbol that God had a plan, a reason, for their survival. With heavy, but enlightened hearts, we said goodbye to the patriots and their families. After all, there were two reasons for this trip. We would now go to meet with Harry Wiliford, the grandson of Arthur Chevrolet. **********

We met at an Italian restaurant. There are a lot of those in Indianapolis. Present, Brian Hasler, Mark Eutsler, Bob Gates (a racing enthusiast writer), Harry Wiliford (Arthur Chevrolet’s grandson), and Harry’s sons Stephen and Ed. Of course, Brenda and I were there also. At lunch, I learned that Arthur bought the house on Carey Street in Slidell to house his entire family, including his daughter, son-in-law and their children, Harry being one. Harry remembers the yard of the home being much larger than the photos he has seen, but we all know what the eyes of a child remembers. From the restaurant, we went to what I call the genesis of the Arthur Chevrolet story. At least, it was the beginning of where I got attached to it. We went to a large cemetery where, at one time, I believed that Arthur Chevrolet rested in a lonely unmarked grave next to his brothers Louis and Gaston. In the very recent past, new markers have been erected correcting this error, resulting in the gravestone being sent to Slidell. From there we went to the Indianapolis Speedway. It appeared that Harry had very little involvement with the Speedway or

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EPILOGUE: The U.S.S. Indianapolis has finally been found! A team of civilian researchers led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen discovered the cruiser's wreckage on August 18, 2017 on the floor of the Pacific Ocean, 18,000 feet below the surface.

they with him, even though his family could have been considered early pioneers of the project. Regardless, the Speedway made up for it. We were given an almost completely private tour, led by the museum executives. It was touching when the museum rolled out an engine that Arthur helped design and, with his hands, tooled the parts. It was called a Ford-Frontenac engine and was the favorite of many race car drivers. We were then able to touch the car that Harry's great-uncle Gaston drove to victory on the Speedway in 1920. Our group could not have been shown more attention than given to us that day.

The Chevrolet family, including the Wilifords, do not share any of the fame or fortune of the General Motors flagship auto, other than the name. The rights were sold years ago, and other mementos have been sold are lost. But for one afternoon, we got to experience some of the pleasures of having a famous name, as if we were they. This chapter is not closed. We still have the final placing of the stone. I have invited Harry, Stephen and Ed to come to Slidell. Harry has not been back since his grandfather’s funeral in 1946. Harry, Stephen and Ed, this community would welcome you. Y’all come now.

Mr. Allen’s search expedition released pictures of wreckage on the sea floor, including a telltale piece of hull bearing the number 35, evidence to the still-living survivors that the ship they frantically escaped in the early hours of July 30, 1945, had finally been found. Mr. Allen, whose father fought in World War II, has made a passion of finding and preserving artifacts from the war. His expedition said that the precise location of the Indianapolis would be kept secret from the public, and that the site would be respected as a grave, as American law requires.

 John S. Case October 2017

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“Your Estate Matters” By Ronda M. Gabb, NP, JD, RFC

Legal-ease

SPECIAL NEEDS TRUSTS AND AUTISM Sam and Laura were delighted with the birth of their daughter Ella. The proud parents touted photos and began making college fund contributions. However, as time went on, Sam and Laura became concerned about Ella’s delay in developing basic skills. After enduring a gauntlet of testing, a diagnosis was made - Ella was autistic. The diagnosis of autism in children has dramatically increased in recent years. CDC statistics from 2016 show that one in 68 U. S. children has an autism spectrum disorder. Autism varies from mildly impaired to severely affected. Some children will see more specialists than others, such as speech and language therapists, occupational therapists and doctors specializing in autism. Many parents have found public resources to be scarce or insufficient. Children who are severely impacted by autism may find themselves struggling with the disorder into adulthood and, thus, unable to live in an independent environment, and requiring assistance with daily tasks. One way to assure a child with autism receives the best care available is to establish a Special Needs Trust (SNT) for the child. A SNT ensures that its beneficiary receives the benefit of assets transferred to the trust, while permitting the beneficiary to retain access to public government resources. A Trustee manages the trust property to make certain it will last for the lifetime of the beneficiary. The Trustee has discretion to make distributions for supplemental expenses that are not covered by government-funded sources, such as Medicaid. Because the child is only a beneficiary, they are not considered the owner of the trust property and will still qualify for resources provided by the government. For most parents, a SNT is created inside their Will (called a Testamentary Trust) and does not become effective until the parent’s death. In Louisiana, Special Needs Planning is paramount because children with special needs are considered “forced heirs” for inheritance purposes. This means that a parent (and sometimes a grandparent) is “forced” to leave their child an inheritance. If the SNT

is not set up properly, leaving your child an inheritance of more than $2,000 may cause them to lose their government benefits. Parents can be reassured their special needs child will be taken care of by setting up a SNT that provides the beneficiary with sufficient support to live life with more than just the basics provided by government benefits. In addition to Special Needs Trusts, relatively recent changes in the law allow some of the special needs person’s assets to be set aside in an ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) account. ABLE is a special savings account for financing certain qualified expenses of persons with disabilities, meant to enhance their health, education, independence, and quality of life, allowing the purchase of special equipment, therapy, technology, or personal assistance – without jeopardizing or reducing their monthly SSI check. If you would like to learn more about the best ways to support your loved ones with special needs, attend our seminar, or call our office to schedule a one-on-one consultation.

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Portraits of Slidell Story and Photos by William Blackwell

CENTRAL PHARMACY (circa 1910-1926) Central Pharmacy may not be a business name most Slidell residents are familiar with nowadays, but it could have been where your great-grandparents filled their prescriptions in the first quarter of the 20th century.

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William Blackwell is a native of Slidell. "Once I began studying photography, it seemed to me that some of those wonderful buildings in Olde Towne should be photographed to capture and preserve their memory, beauty, and antiquity for future generations." See his Slidell shots and more on his facebook page: FieldofViewPhotography

It was incorporated in August of 1910 and was located in the first block of Cousin Street, in the rear of the Bank of Slidell building. Slidell’s population, by then, had reached over 2,000 and the need for a new pharmacy was obvious. Prior to that, all prescriptions were filled at Polk’s Crescent Pharmacy, owned by Dr. Joseph F. Polk and his brother-in-law, pharmacist Joseph Calvin Langston. Both were working around the clock, filling prescriptions and attending to the medical needs of the growing community. After 1905, other physicians had started to arrive in Slidell, including Dr. E. P. de Ballard, who quickly became a trusted and dependable physician that assisted Dr. Polk in looking after the health of the townspeople.


Soon enough, with a capital stock of $5,000, Dr. de Ballard and two business partners, W. T. Tippin and pharmacist James M. Olivier, launched Central Pharmacy. It was set up as a limited corporation with the three equal partners serving as its board of directors. But, from the beginning, it was the young graduate of Tulane University School of Pharmacology, James Mortimer Olivier, who became the face of Central Pharmacy. He was there daily, managing the pharmacy, filling the prescriptions and talking to his customers. James was well liked and frequently the subject of polite social commentary in the St. Tammany Farmer. He was nearly always addressed as Dr. Olivier in keeping with the professional courtesy and custom of the time. The enterprising exploits of James Olivier did not begin with the opening of Central Pharmacy. The previous year, he had recognized the growing need for wholesome temperance beverages in Slidell. So, armed with his chemistry/ pharmaceutical knowledge, he and business partner W. T. Tippin launched a soft drink bottling business that was to succeed beyond anyone’s expectations. Called the Acme Bottling Works, the plant was located on Liddle Avenue near the present day intersection of

Front Street and Pontchartrain Blvd. The lot belonged to C.M. Liddle and the artesian well water came from the adjoining property of Oliver Aiken. Acme Bottling Works employed the latest in filtering and carbonation systems in order to produce a variety of fine soft drinks. Olivier’s and Tippin’s best selling brands were called Ozone Red and St. Tammany Seltzer. These soft drinks must have tasted great judging by the huge volume of sales reported. No doubt, Central Pharmacy sold their fair share.

By 1911, the bank had added a one story annex in the rear of their building and the Central Pharmacy happily moved into the larger quarters. With the extra space available, they were able to add a soda fountain. The pharmacy employed a number of school boys to serve as soda jerks over the years. One young man, it was said, became quite popular for his many creative concoctions which attracted customers far and wide. In 1919, the St. Tammany Farmer ran a small piece about the success of the Central Pharmacy, which serves as confirmation that the pharmacy was still in existence in that year. Although not much more information is available about the business, a 1926 Sanborn map does verify that a pharmacy still occupied the rear of the bank building at that time. It is believed that the Central Pharmacy went out of business shortly thereafter.

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Of Your Money

By Mike Rich, CFP®

Pontchartrain Investment Management

Solid comfort, and what it might mean for your money. One of my favorite books is Camping and Woodcraft, by Horace Kephart, who was one of the driving forces behind the establishment of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. In the early 1900s, Kephart spent several years living pretty much by himself deep in the woods of the southern Appalachian Mountains. In his book, which is subtitled A Handbook for Vacation Campers and for Travelers in the Wilderness, he describes ways to choose a proper tent, dress and preserve game, make utensils from bark, use an axe without chopping off one’s foot, tan hides, and many other woodland tasks. One of my favorite chapters is on cabin-building, and the way Kephart introduces his subject intrigues me every time I read it:

I’ve read those words many times, and Kephart’s description of how a cozy little cabin in the woods can provide “solid comfort” when the cold wind is howling resonates with me. I’ve actually been in a cabin in the woods when the wind was blowing hard and the rain was coming down in buckets, and I know how comfortable and reassuring it can be to have the warmth of a fireplace, solid walls, a roof with no leaks, and a full pantry.

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“Nobody knows what solid comfort means until he finds himself, snug and well fed, in a bit of a cabin, far away in the big sticks, while icy blasts rebound from his stanch roof and walls, to go howling away through a famine-stricken wilderness, thwarted by a woodsman’s providence and skill. Open the door: you are face-to-face with misery and death. Close it: the hearth-fire leaps, the kettle sings, you smoke contentedly, and all is well.” (Camping and Woodcraft, The Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1917, p. 236)

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1. MY CLIENTS ARE USING LIFE INSURANCE TO PROTECT THEIR FAMILY IF THEY DIE SOONER, RATHER THAN LATER. When the husband in this client couple was a young family man, one of his fears was that he would leave his wife and children with no money for a decent standard of living, college tuition, and retirement if he died young. So, he bought as much life insurance as the insurance company would give him. He bought term insurance at first, because it was cheap. Over time, however, he converted some of it to whole life insurance because he liked how it built cash value, figuring (rightly) that he could use the cash as additional retirement income. So now, not only will his wife have the money – and choices – to live out her days with dignity if he dies first, they will have some extra money to draw from if they need it before he dies.1 My client’s wife has a whole life policy, too, enough to help their kids pay her final expenses and then some. I don’t know of many people who can get away without having at least some life insurance coverage. Call me, and we’ll figure out what you need and how you can pay for it.


Although my clients now have their own business, they both worked for a big company a while back. As part of their benefits packages, they each had group disability coverage, but, like many group policies, it had a lot of coverage holes and they were fearful that they would have a real battle on their hands if they ever submitted a claim and tried to collect. So, they purchased individual policies, which they still own. We hope they never need it, but, if they do, their policies will replace most of their income.1 Unless you have another income source, my guess is that your paycheck drives most of what you do financially for your family. So, are you protecting your income with disability insurance? If not, call me to get something in place soon.

3. MY CLIENTS HAVE PUT SOME MONEY IN FIXED ANNUITIES SO THEY WILL HAVE A GUARANTEED INCOME IN RETIREMENT THAT WILL NEVER RUN OUT. My clients do not have pensions, so they are building the potential for a pension-like income by using fixed annuities. When they are ready to take income from them, my clients will have a steady flow of cash to supplement their Social

Security benefit and income from other sources. Because of the way their particular annuities work, the income base builds up in a predictable way every year. Plus, even if they live to be 110, the cash flow they will receive from their annuities will never end.2 Does this sound like something you’d like too? If so, call me and we’ll see if it makes sense for you.

4. MY CLIENTS PURCHASED LONG TERM CARE INSURANCE SO THEY CAN LIVE OUT THEIR DAYS IN DIGNITY IF THEY NEED SOMEONE TO TAKE CARE OF THEM. My clients have family members who ran through a lot of money paying for assisted living care. They don’t want the same thing to happen to them. So, they each have a long term care insurance policy that will pay for their care when they’re old, whether that care is at home, in a nursing home, an assisted living residence, an adult day care program, hospice, whatever. Not only is their retirement nest egg protected, but their three adult children are relieved of the potentially crushing financial, physical, and emotional burden of caring for their parents.1 Can you imagine the solid comfort they must feel? The long term care industry has changed dramatically in the years I have been a financial advisor, and there are a lot of options, including some that let you build

assets while you protect them. Approximately 70% of people over 65 are going to need some form of long term care, and many of those folks will have to spend a bunch of their retirement money on it. DO NOT BE ONE OF THEM. Call me to find out how you can avoid that potential catastrophe. Make no mistake. I cannot guarantee that my clients will never experience a financial set-back. However, they have taken many steps to possibly cushion the blows that might come their way. Being financially prepared for the future is a choice that only you can make. Have you been thinking that maybe it’s time to experience the solid comfort that a sound financial plan can provide? Have you procrastinated long enough? A lot of people wait to prepare for retirement until it’s too late. Don’t make that mistake with your money. I’m just a phone call away, so let’s get started.

1

Benefits depend on the claims paying ability of the issuing company.

Income guarantees depend on the claims paying ability of the issuing company. Annuities are long-term investment vehicles designed for retirement purposes. Gains from tax-deferred investments are taxable as ordinary income upon withdrawal. Guarantees are based on the claims paying ability of the issuing company. Withdrawals made prior to age 59 ½ are subject to a 10% IRS penalty tax and surrender charges may apply.

2

Securities and Advisory Services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

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the heroic the intrepid the courageous the valiant the bold the daring the noble the brave

The Cajun Navy Story by Kathleen DesHotel

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Studies in psychology give several reasons for heroic behavior and characteristics of those who help others without expecting any remuneration. They have an urge to serve regardless the cost and exhibit behavior or actions on behalf of another person for a moral cause. They are also humble and do not revel in being called heroes.

The people who are part of this story clearly offer reasons for hooking up their hunting or fishing boats and traveling to wherever Mother Nature has put people in jeopardy in order to rescue those in need. Actually, there’s a large network of people who volunteer: the people in boats, dispatchers, cooks, home restorers, nurses, and animal lovers.

Anyone who read the Anglo-Saxon epic, “Beowulf,” can relate the protagonist to those of modern day heroes in the Cajun Navy 2016, thus named during the August floods in and around Baton Rouge a year ago. Bravery, loyalty, honor, willingness to risk for the greater good, all describe the epic hero. The difference comes in Beowulf’s superhuman strength and love of glory.

Dispatcher Shannon McDaniel describes the group as having several different motivations to participate in rescue. For her, it is a family tradition. She recalls growing up in Ville Platte and her father and grandfather going out in their boats to help those in need. Back then, they were called “Marines de Cajun.” Today, Shannon says that there are

many factions of the Cajun Navy and that there is even a Cajun Relief Team led by Rob Gaudet, who added technology to the rescuers efforts. They use an app called Zello for communications, and dispatchers like Shannon help to send people in boats to specific locations where they get requests from people in distress. She said, “It’s a grassroots group thing with people in boats with a GPS to help navigate in order to find those stranded in their homes once they receive information from the dispatcher.” Even the dispatchers have tough jobs because when the distress call comes in, the waters often rise faster than the rescuers can get to them, and the stress is great. Nonetheless, everyone keeps working without expecting any reward.


Now, the group has a 501(c)3 nonprofit status so that some expenses and assistance can be covered. It is a collective community of people who do not seek recognition but act as neighbors simply helping neighbors. Last August, the group became known as Cajun Navy 2016 during the rain floods in Baton Rouge when folks who are hunters and fishermen put the word out that they were going to help with rescues. Jon Bridgers is the founder and CEO from Watson, LA who has worked in conjunction with the Live Oak United Methodist Church to become “a citizens’ group that helps God’s people.” “This has become a year round dedication for us,” Jon explained. “We have done research about how best to reach people through social media where we can place pleas for help with boat rescues. After the (Baton Rouge)rescues, we offered to help people gut their houses and assist with some repairs. Shortly after we set up our Facebook page, we amazingly acquired 8000 followers.”

Orange, TX

“On the Sunday after Harvey went through Houston, I just put out a call on Cajun Navy 2016 Facebook and on the church page for people with boats to meet at Costco’s because they have a huge parking lot. What happened was amazing even to me. Eighty boats were waiting to go and help. That number grew. The people going to shop at Costco asked us about our plans and immediately gave us cash to get gas and goods that they felt the victims might need. This had to be the hand of God guiding everyone,” he said. Ultimately, over 750 boaters volunteered to rescue. Sometimes the boaters have difficulty making connections with officials who can get them to where they are needed. Jon feels like he was lucky to connect with Congressman Garrett Graves who represents Louisiana’s 6th District and has expressed concerns for US coastal areas and for storm preparation and aftermath. Jon said, “He coordinated with government officials and got us past road blocks and to locations where we worked with state troopers and police to help.” After their rescue work in Texas for Hurricane Harvey, President Trump offered to meet with 30 Cajun Navy 2016 volunteers after background checks. He asked how they accomplished all of this. Jon explained to him how the people involved pay their own way. They cover gas for the trip to drive to locations and for their boats to go out and rescue people stranded in their houses. Often there are needed repairs to the boats depending on the varying depths of flood waters.

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“I believe there are good things in the works. The president said that he wants to assist us because he knows that we helped with rescue operations and that we have financial burdens.” Yet Jon believes devoutly that God gives everyone a need to help their brothers and sisters and that He finds a way to guide. Jon ponders governmental assistance being on a whole different level, “We have never been a bureaucracy. We just went out to help with goodness in our hearts. Being

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Governor John Bel Edwards has acknowledged that Cajun Navy 2016 fills a void that assists government. He hopes to help with giving them technology equipment funds and a fleet of boats that will go out with designated leaders. Plus, he spoke of providing a large warehouse in which to keep equipment and boats for future disasters. Each new rescue experience adds to their education. Jon assesses the experience in the 2016 Baton Rouge rain flood as having gone through the blood, sweat, and tears of boot camp. He said, “In Hurricane Harvey’s floodwaters, we graduated to the serious acid test of gaining trust and organization of efforts.” Hence, they are earning recognition as good and reliable Samaritans. “We are all volunteer Louisiana sportsmen who hunt and fish and who know how to handle a boat. It’s tough at times to work like mad to make a difference in the lives of people who need help.” Rescuers have jobs they leave; or, as in Jon's case, he is self-employed in Bridgers Construction. He feels like his work experience has given him knowledge that he can also use to assist flood and high wind victims. There are also the families of the boaters to consider. The volunteers are busy and absent for long stretches of time, and sometimes this causes stress. Nonetheless, Jon's family knows that this is his mission in life. He advises, “People have to be dedicated to make stuff happen. We meet every day to discuss collaboration because no one can do this alone. It’s not just me; there are many people involved. We are here for good, finally organized, and may get funding, not for ourselves but for the cause.” Part of their learning and organization includes use of the app Zello which acts as a sort of CB radio. Dispatchers can send messages via designated channels about where there are victims who need rescue. Boaters each keep a GPS in order to find the addresses they receive. With most address indicators under water, the GPS enables them to find individuals stranded in their homes. In refining their future operations, Cajun Navy 2016 plans to take applications for volunteers and to do background checks in order for each boat and car to get a sticker and each boater to get a photo ID tag on a lanyard. In this way officials can see that they are part of a benevolent group that knows their way around waterways and how to offer help.

This fun run/walk is open to EVERYONE in the community and we hope to see you there!

SATURDAY

a nationally owned entity will be a new challenge, but we will be glad to use the money to do good things for our fellow man.”

Jon explains, “Words cannot describe how I feel as I rescue people. Perhaps both glad and sad best covers it. I am glad they are alive and sad for all they have lost and might never fully get back and for what they will face in the future.” When asked if he recalls any specific rescues, he tells of elderly Ms. Etta, a rescue in Baton Rouge last year. “We went back after the water went down to check on her and found her living in the same trailer with her dogs. Sadly, the trailer was still in terrible condition with mold and destruction. Jon and friends advised her to take whatever money she


got to buy a new trailer, but she insisted that she’d prefer they fix it up if she paid for the supplies. Perhaps this was just for their company. They agreed. “Her conditions were nauseating,” Jon said. “So we worked hard for 18 days to gut and replace her sheetrock and to make the trailer livable again. Sadly, when one of our people went to bring her food, they found she had passed away in her new bed. I still carry that memory in my heart.” When Jon met the president, he already knew Jon’s name. Jon said to him, “I too want to make America great again, one rescue at a time.” Jon Bridgers can be contacted on Facebook Cajun Navy 2016 or at bridgersjon@yahoo.com. Along for a ride in a Cajun Navy boat, Kiran Chawla was so immersed in the rescue activity that she forgot she was there as a reporter. Kiran is the WAFB Channel 9 Baton Rouge lead investigative reporter. It was back in school at Northshore High in Slidell that she determined her career would be in broadcasting. She took classes that would help form good writing, research, photography and visual arts in AP English, Photography, and Yearbook. In her senior year, she interned at WWL-TV in New Orleans. At Loyola, she majored in Broadcast Journalism and Criminal Justice. She was focused, determined, and prepared when she entered the work force. At WAFB, she has even won Emmy Awards for an investigative series. In her field, she has to be ready to go at a moment’s notice. She got the assignment to go with the Cajun Navy an hour before it was time to leave. “I barely had enough time to change clothes and meet up with my photographer. I go on these assignments because I want to bring the feelings and the reality to my Baton Rouge viewers,” she explained. Being immersed in the Hurricane Harvey aftermath dredged up feelings from 2005 when Hurricane Katrina brought her wrath to the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coast. “It was emotional,” she said.

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“The Cajun Navy boaters were dedicated to rescuing people and animals. We rode up and down streets looking for those who needed assistance, and those who we found expressed so much appreciation that we came from Louisiana to Texas to help. Their response made me cry.” The work was physical and heartrending for Kiran because, while they were rescuing people stranded in floodwaters, her experience with Katrina and the Baton Rouge August floods made her aware what a long road people had ahead and how difficult it would be to get enough money to get back into their homes and return to the life they once had. “One reassuring aspect of this difficult assignment was the realization that during times of loss and trauma, there is no judgment of who a person was. Discrimination didn’t exist. As an Indian and a female, I got as much respect as anyone else out there working. People who we rescued could be any color. All that mattered was that they were in need, and the Cajun Navy wanted to help them,” Kiran observed. Richie Schaefer joined forces with Cajun Navy 2016 in Baton

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Jon Bridgers meets Pres. Trump

Cajun Navy dispatchers

Rouge. “When Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, I knew I would have to get my boat and answer God’s call to help. My buddy Mike Anderson from Ethel, LA and my Lacombe neighbor Rene Reid wanted to go.” I told my wife that I wanted to meet up with them and help in Texas. She replied, “I doubt that I could stop you,” and that was approval enough for Richie to go. “We worked hard and traveled far, but we did not consider ourselves heroes. We didn’t save lives; we evacuated and relocated people. I believe that God enabled my participation because I had to get people to switch shifts with me at my supervisor job with Exxon at the refinery to be able to go,” he recalled. A year earlier, the same guys helped with the flood in Baton Rouge and ended up helping the LSU vet school evacuate all the animals. This gave them a lesson in rescues and communication on Zello. They rolled west to meet up with authorities who would act as guides. They headed to a fire station, but the water was too high to drive through. The water was rising, and the current was strong. Then they headed to Beaumont, TX where the interstate was flooded and shut down. They got off at Winnie, TX, where the water was also high. It being late, they headed to higher ground and ended up at a truck stop, sleeping in someone’s RV. This was during the hurricane with bands of rain and strong wind rocking the RV. Eventually the sheriff’s department put them to work. Fifteen boats were communicating where the needs were in the rural community of Winnie.

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After Winnie, they traveled to answer distress calls in Port Arthur and China, TX. China was treacherous because the water was high and then low which made

Mike Anderson & pit bull rescue

navigation with a boat motor tough. “Boats launched in shallow spots, and boats were everywhere when we came upon a nursing home with old people stuck there in unsanitary conditions. They should not have waited to evacuate. Boats stacked around the front door. We didn’t have enough wheel chairs to get them out. We contacted the Coast Guard for help, and they took over because they had a supply of wheel chairs to do the job.” “We headed east and rode through apartment complexes with fierce wind in our faces. We rescued people and their pets. In one case, a group of ladies were so afraid that the boat would capsize that I danced on the bow to show them just how safe they were,” Richie recalled. Richie believes that God provided for him to have the talent and ability needed to help others. “If everyone did just a little bit for others, it’d be a much better world. The Bible wants us to help. If I can, I do.” Another group that adds their talents and abilities to helping is the Cajun Gravy, led by Chef Kyle Rome. Cajun Navy 2016 will be collaborating with Cajun Gravy. While the Cajun Navy did rescues, Cajun Gravy prepared meals for first responders. By the time they left Orange, TX, they had served 19,000 hot meals. They worked with donations and a crew of 22 people. The devoted group headed back home to make plans to mobilize and coordinate to get to Florida after Irma made landfall. Chef Kyle Rome feels, “This is a humbling experience in which God brought everyone together to make our service happen.” Michael Anderson, who rode with Richie Schaefer, also feels that it is more blessed to give than to receive. “Volunteering to help is just what people should do. Any abled person should help in some way.

16 year old Jake

They don’t have to be in a boat or giving money. There are many ways to help. Sometimes it’s important to just listen to someone who went through a trauma. I also love rescuing animals because I am a big hunter, and these animals who need us so much, well, that’s the other end of the spectrum to save them. That instinct comes natural,” he explained. Anderson rescued a pit bull in BR a year ago. The dog was barely surviving because he was abandoned inside a submerged truck with the windows rolled up and floodwaters above the seats. "I had to act fast to get him into my boat, and he was injured. But now the dog has his own Facebook page, Mikey the Flood Dog! Rachel Ray saw this and invited us to come on her show along with Mikey and 14 other dogs that she helped to get adopted on air. She also paid for two major surgeries Mikey required. When he was well, Mikey was adopted by a Louisiana family and has a really nice life.” “When we go out, our families worry about us. It’s hard on them as well as us. We all came back from Texas sick, but it is more a mental angst. I get caught up in everyone else being in a bad way. So, doing what we do is the least we can do. We never know where we are going or what to expect. It’s important to have likeminded wingmen like Richie Schaefer, Ryan Evans, and Darrell Watson who think the same as I do. We have to act fast as the safety of everyone in the boat depends on it. Sometimes that thought can be heavy on the mind,” Anderson shared. Heavy on Patti Sano’s mind is when she was a resident of Slidell during Hurricane Katrina and a teacher at Northshore High. Her family lost their home and everything in it. They traveled north to Kingwood, TX


to establish a safe home in a subdivision known as The Livable Forrest. “I had read about the Cajun Navy after the floods of 2016 inundated the Baton Rouge area. I never thought I would have firsthand experience with them here in Kingwood. As the water rose and dozens of neighborhoods began to flood, it was the Cajun Navy that came to the rescue,” she praised. “As we begin the recovery in Houston, we share stories of heroic rescues, including my 87 year old mother-in-law, about iconic green flat-bottom boats. These Louisiana brethren worked countless hours in horrific conditions. Our city is decimated: homes, businesses, schools. I remember Salmen High being ruined after Katrina and them having to platoon with Northshore High. Now, here in Houston, my Kingwood High of over 2700 students will require us to platoon with another school. The repetition is surreal,” she surmised. “The stories of our Cajun heroes will help us process the impending grief, and their generosity will help us rationalize the irrational. I will now live in and watch another community I love recover, but I will

forever be grateful to our Cajun neighbors who risked life and limb to save us from drowning,” Sano said.

Now Andrea is gutting her home with her retrievers at her side. They are seeking their former balance in life.

Houston resident Andrea Kinsky Schlecht is another such grateful person for the rescue of her family and her three golden retrievers, especially 16 year old Jake. A year ago, Jake’s owners dropped him off at a shelter to be euthanized, and fortunately they called Andrea. “I am a foster coordinator for Golden Beginnings Golden Retriever Rescue; immediately I knew he was my soul dog.”

Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser says, “Groups like the Cajun Navy and countless other people who give of their time and energy to help our fellow neighbors during times of need should give us all hope about the future of our country. The Cajun Navy 2016 has responded to many disasters over the years, and their tireless work makes a huge difference immediately after a disaster. As we move from response to recovery, the work done by the partner organizations of Volunteer Louisiana is vital to the long-term recovery of communities; and I urge anyone willing and able to sign up to volunteer at VolunteerLouisiana@ crt.la.gov.”

Jake was 15 and had several problems including infected pads from toenails growing into them and could not walk. He also was overweight, was heart worm positive, and had a tumor. “I adopted him, nursed him to health, and discovered how smart and loveable he is, along with my other two golden retrievers. When we flooded in the hurricane, the National Guard told us we would have to leave, and the Cajun Navy came in air boats to get us. Jake was scared to death, but the gentlemen were so kind and gentle and talked to him so sweetly that he survived the ordeal very well. I will always be grateful to the Cajun Navy.”

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As dispatcher Shannon McDaniel explained, “There are many reasons that people help in these times.” These can include family tradition, religious or spiritual belief, or a need to feel good about themselves. Jon Bridgers, Richie Schaefer, and Mike Anderson all agreed that they do this simply because it is the right thing to do.

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Solar Eclipse 2017 Story and photos by Donna Bush I had planned to photograph the eclipse from a "location of totality," but was not able to make the trip, so my backup plan was a local shoot. Thankfully, I started prepping about three weeks prior to the big day. Actually, I started even a couple of months before that, when I began researching solar filters for my cameras and solar glasses to protect my eyes while viewing. I found a 10 pack of CE Certified Safe Approved solar glasses for $13.48 and after a bit more extensive research, I found solar filter sheets. My talented husband crafted easily removable solar filters for my camera lens choices. I wanted a location that would allow clear views of the sky without any tree obstruction. My yard didn’t accommodate this, but I knew a place that could. I made a phone call to my friends at the USF&WS (United States Fish and Wildlife Service) regional headquarters in Lacombe to verify it would be okay for me to set up there for the day of the eclipse. We were welcomed with open arms and weren’t the only ones who had that idea! We met Paul and Susie who brought a portable pavilion, table, laptop, telescope and camera, plus eclipse cookies! After all, this is hard work and we must have nourishment. Danny Breaux brought his telescope and homemade pinhole projector viewers. A group of college ladies showed up with viewers that they made from 12-pack soft drink boxes. About a dozen USF&WS employees strolled through our viewing arena, checking out each of our unique versions of observing the eclipse. With extra solar glasses and sharing, everyone was able to safely view some portion of the eclipse. How much do you really know about solar eclipses? What causes an eclipse to occur? Per NASA’s website, “Sometimes when the moon orbits Earth, it moves between the sun and Earth. When this happens, the moon blocks the light of the sun from reaching Earth. This causes an eclipse of the sun, or solar eclipse. During a solar eclipse, the moon casts a shadow onto Earth.” There are three different types of solar eclipses: Total is where the sun, moon and earth are in a direct line and is only visible from a limited portion of the earth. The moon is close to the earth and completely blocks the sun during totality. Partial is when the sun, moon and earth are not directly lined up and the sun appears to have a dark shadow over part of its surface. It looks kind of like Pac-Man. Annular occurs when the moon is farthest from the earth and doesn’t completely block the sun. The appearance looks like a ring around the moon. The moon casts two shadows on earth during a solar eclipse. The umbra is the first shadow and it gets smaller as it reaches Earth. It is the dark center of the moon’s shadow. The penumbra is the second shadow, which gets larger as it reaches Earth. If you are standing in the penumbra, like we were here in Louisiana, you will see a partial eclipse. If you’re standing in the umbra you will enjoy a total eclipse.


The last total solar eclipse that took place on the United States mainland was in 1979. The last total solar eclipse to run from coast to coast was in 1918 and entered around Oregon / Washington and ran all the way to Florida. The next total solar eclipse will take place in 2019 but, unfortunately, you’ll have to be south of the equator, like Chile or Argentina!

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Did you know that solar eclipses happen fairly often? Yes, 2 - 4 happen each year. However, the area of totality may only be 50 miles wide. Usually a total eclipse only happens in a certain location every 100 years, although Carbondale, Illinois will see two within seven years – August 21, 2017 and April 8, 2024. Lucky! We typically think of the sun and moon rising in the east and setting in the west. But, in reality, as the Earth spins on its axis, the sun and moon only appear to come up in the east and go down in the west. In reality, the moon orbits the Earth from west to east. This becomes more noticeable during a solar eclipse, as the moon’s shadow must follow the path of the moon itself – to the east. Solar eclipses aren’t the only kind of eclipse we can observe. There are also lunar eclipses. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth passes directly between the sun and the moon, blocking the light from the sun to the moon and casting Earth’s shadow on the moon. As with solar eclipses, there are three types of lunar eclipses – total, partial and penumbral. Of course, the most dramatic is a total, when the Earth’s shadow completely covers the moon and makes it look red or orange. With a partial eclipse, it appears that the umbra is taking a bite out of a fraction of the moon, gradually growing larger and then smaller. During a penumbral lunar eclipse, only the outer shadow of the Earth falls on the moon. Most viewers won’t even notice the shading. Thirty-five percent of lunar eclipses are penumbral. Thirty percent are partial and the remaining 35% are total. A minimum of two lunar eclipses occurs each year, with a maximum of five. As with solar eclipses, they are not necessarily visible from the United States. Even though we weren’t in the path of totality, it was an awesome experience to witness the eclipse. There was rain around but we didn’t get any. We did get some high clouds passing over during the height of our eclipse, but I thought they added to the mystery and uniqueness of our view. We even observed sunspots, which are really cool, literally. Sunspots are cooler, darker areas on the surface of the sun. The average surface temperature of the sun is 6000 degrees Celsius, whereas a sunspot is about 1500 degrees cooler. They can last a few hours or a few months. At times there may be a lot or none at all. Often they will appear in pairs that are aligned in an east-west direction.

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When will the United States see another eclipse?

THE CITY OF SLIDELL’S

Total Solar Eclipse – April 8, 2024 Annular Solar Eclipse – October 14, 2023 Total Lunar Eclipse – January 20-21, 2019 Penumbral Lunar Eclipse – July 4-5, 2020 Why Does NASA Study Eclipses?

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Hundreds of years ago, when people observed the moon during an eclipse, they discovered that the shape of Earth is round. Even after all these years, scientists are still learning about the moon from lunar eclipses. In December 2011, NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter gathered data about how quickly the moon’s day side (the side that always faces Earth) cools during a lunar eclipse. NASA can learn what the moon's surface is made of from this data. If an area of the moon's surface is flat, it will cool quickly. Scientists use this data to know which areas of the moon are rough with boulders and which are flat. NASA also studies solar eclipses. Scientists use solar eclipses as an opportunity to study the sun’s corona. The corona is the sun's top layer. During an annular eclipse, NASA uses ground and space instruments to view the corona when the moon blocks the sun’s glare.

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What did ancient civilizations think about solar eclipses? Some native tribes shot flaming arrows at the sun trying to reignite it. Other tribes shot at the beast they thought was consuming the sun.

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Norse mythology believed the god Loki created wolflike giants to eat the sun which caused the eclipse. This was Loki’s revenge for being chained by Thor, Odin and other gods. Hindu mythology says that the sun and the moon told Vishnu of the demon Rahu drinking the elixir of life. In response, Vishnu cut off Rahu’s head before the elixir passed through his throat. Out of revenge, Rahu eats the sun and the moon, causing a solar eclipse. However, since Rahu’s body is not attached, the sun and moon are able to escape each time. Ancient Egyptians believed Apep, the cosmic world serpent, represented chaos and death. He chased after Ra, the sun god, as he pulled the sun across the sky, starting a new day. An eclipse occurred when Apep caught Ra and ate the sun. But eventually Ra would escape with the sun and end the eclipse. Ancient Chinese believed that a dragon ate the sun and caused the eclipse. When the sun was blocked


out, people would bang on pots and drums hoping to the chase away the dragon. Cultures in Siberia thought that a vampire ate the sun. Inca mythology thought that the sun god, Inti, was one of the most powerful deities in the pantheon. He was thought to be a kind god as he made the crops grow, but when an eclipse occurred, the Incans thought he was showing his displeasure and they would offer food and gifts to appease him. Ancient Japanese believed that poison dropped from the sky during an eclipse and hence, they covered their wells when one occurred. Several cultures thought that fog, dew or precipitation during an eclipse would poison them. Aztecs believed that a celestial beast was eating the sun and if a pregnant woman viewed the eclipse, the beast would eat her unborn child. Unusual phenomenons during a solar eclipse... While the moon completely covering the face of the sun during a total eclipse is unique enough, there are other strange occurrences as well. Some don’t require a total eclipse. You can see crescent moon shadows by finding a tree and looking in the shade of the tree’s shadow before totality. You can see hundreds of crescent images of the partially covered sun on the ground. Gaps between the tree leaves act as a pinhole camera, projecting the Sun’s image on the ground. Shadow bands are seen a few minutes before and after totality. If you place a large sheet of white paper on the ground, you can observe a multitude of faint moving bands similar to ripples of sunshine hitting the bottom of a swimming pool. When the moon completely covers the sun, the temperature drops with total darkness. Animals may be fooled into thinking it is nighttime. Crickets may chirp and birds may go to roost. The diamond ring effect occurs moments before the total eclipse. The slight bit of sun still visible appears as a bright diamond with the ring being the faint glow of the sun around the darkened moon. There may be eruptions, known as prominences, that can’t be seen at any other time. I emphatically recommend that if you are in the viewing area of a total solar or lunar eclipse, that you find a way to observe it. You may even want to consider traveling to a location of totality. That’s my plan for 2024!

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Go Beyond.. Clouds "Rows and flows of angel hair Ice cream castles in the air And feather canyons everywhere I've looked at clouds that way.” In 1969, Joni Mitchell wrote about clouds in the enigmatic and eloquent “Both Sides Now.” Are you one of those people who love to lie on the grass and imagine the clouds are your own personal kaleidoscope, finding objects among the wispy shapes? Do you capture the illusion of peace and heavenly solace in billowy white shapes, or do you barely glance at the sky from your windshield? It doesn’t matter; the clouds are there anyway, just doing their cloud thing. But what happens when you’ve planned an event that invading clouds destroy? Like a trip to see the total eclipse? “But now they only block the sun They rain and snow on everyone So many things I would have done But clouds got in my way.” August 21, 2017 found me in Highlands, North Carolina, lying on a blanket in Kelsey-Hutchinson Park, staring at a lumpy, grey sky. Along with many others who’d traveled to somewhere along the Path of Totality, I spred a blanket on the grass at KelseyHutchinson Founders Park for a couple of hours that Monday morning, watching ominous clouds creep in. 40

Story by Rose Marie Sand Photo by Stephen Lesnik Not gonna happen here, most of us thought. No matter how much we willed them away, no matter how many times we saw a sliver of blue, it became apparent we’d picked the wrong spot. Kids played Frisbee in the grass, but most of the adults kept the eclipse vigil alive, despite the obvious. Some left about 1:30pm, grumbling about riding through mountain roads looking for somewhere else to watch the much heralded event. The patriarch of a family next to us proclaimed he was going to be in a desert of Argentina for the next eclipse in 2019, dammit! My friend and I held out hope for blue breakthrough, until it slowly dawned on us that wasn’t going to happen. More to the point - our hotel had a hot tub; so we decided we’d just as soon wait for the big moment to non-happen in a hot tub rather than a hot park. I was rather surprised at myself for not being upset that the mercurial clouds were disappointing. Instead, I was remembering that a couple of cloudy moments in my past had changed my life. “I've looked at clouds from both sides now From up and down and still somehow” Years ago, I stood under a cloudless sky at the south rim of the Grand Canyon and searched for the ribbon of the Colorado River many miles below. For a couple of years, I’d dreamed of seeing and conquering that hike into the canyon. When I saw the rocky trail and

the impossibly far away river, I longed to be on that rim again three days later, alive and whole after the strenuous hike. I wanted to stare the trails down in victory! I wanted that moment on the rim as much as I’d wanted anything in my life. I had problems to conquer, you see, and I believed I’d find the answer that way. Instead, exhausted, wet, and extremely unhappy, I climbed out of the canyon through a miserable hailstorm, and didn’t look back into the grey abyss. All I wanted was dry clothes and to eat something other than trail mix. There was nothing to see here, folks. “It's cloud's illusions I recall I really don't know clouds at all” So, it took me ten years to get back to the Grand Canyon, all the while dreaming of my moment of triumph. The moment I’d walk up to that rim again, see the river, and think, “I survived all that!” And when I did go back, when I did walk up to the rim ten years later, it was a rainy, miserable day and the view of the spectacular colors of the canyon walls was covered in grey clouds. Again. I laughed out loud at the irony. At the foolish expectation that it would take being in view of the bottom to verify I’d been changed by the hike. I’d known all along there was strength inside me to meet a challenge and walk away from it whole. Whether you could see the end or not…


Just like the Colorado River. Just like the sun. Just like the moon. Just like the clouds. Just like the eclipse. “Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels The dizzy dancing way you feel As every fairy tale comes real I've looked at love that way.” So, I thought as I walked to the hot tub an hour before the expected eclipse what of this eclipse experience is real, no matter what the sky shows me? The world is a crazy place in 2017 – a scary, tumultuous, beautiful place, no matter what your view is at any given moment. It takes a lot of strength to stay optimistic these days. “But now it's just another show You leave 'em laughing when you go And if you care, don't let them know Don't give yourself away.” Eclipses and canyon erosion have been going on as long as the earth and the moon have been orbiting the sun, whether or not man has been there to view them. So have wars, I’m afraid, and so has unrest.

“I've looked at love from both sides now From give and take and still somehow”

“It's love's illusions I recall I really don’t know love, at all.”

We arrived at the hotel grounds and soaked our feet in the hot tub, which was next to a bunch of comfy outdoor furniture with a bunch of other eclipse-seeing wannabees. Most were just chatting away, trying to find peace about the situation. Several people had cameras on tripods with eclipse-proof lenses and eclipse glasses. The prevailing attitude was a kind of “oh, well.”

The cool thing was the fellow with the expensive cameras exchanged email addresses with us, and I actually have a picture of the eclipse I wouldn’t have gotten had I stayed put in the park.

Until one woman cried out, “Look at that!” Strange ray-like patterns had developed in the grey clouds. And right smack dab in the middle of them, blue skies revealed an amazing sun directly above us. Encroaching upon the brightness was an equally amazing moon! We all grabbed our glasses and cheered as we watched the Total Eclipse of the Sun after all! It was all that we’d been promised. Sudden, achingly beautiful, temporal and eternal.

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Hmmm, is there some message there I’m supposed to get about being open to change? Here’s my take-away: Accept change without regret and without disappointment. Clouds are simply weather patterns, but they can also be about optimistic dreams. The bittersweet self-awareness of being hurt by something you expected to bring you joy, can break your spirit or make you stronger. It’s your choice where you go with it.

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“WE SERVE”

“We Serve” is the motto of Lions Club International, the world’s largest service organization with over 1.4 million members of 46,000 clubs in over 210 countries. The Slidell Noon Lions Club was chartered in 1928 and started out with installing street signs in the then-sleepy little village of Slidell. They continue to benefit our area to this day with several active programs aimed at serving our community, our state and the world. Pictured here is the Plus Optix Camera that the Slidell Noon Lions purchased with monies from their fundraising endeavors. It is used to conduct vision screening of preschool and early elementary school children in the Slidell area. Last year, the Slidell Lions conducted free eye screenings on over 1500 children in the Slidell area with slightly less than 10% of those children being identified as needing further examination by an eye doctor. The Cubsite program is a key element in the Lions mission given to them by Helen Keller in 1926 to be “Knights of Sight.” The Lions Club also conducts a vision assistance program to help lower income citizens acquire eyeglasses every Thursday at 1 PM at the Lions Den, located at 356 Cleveland Street in Olde Towne. Other activities to help fight blindness include financial contributions to the LA Lions Eye Foundation who manages the statewide Cubsite program and, along with LSU medical school,

conducts critical research to prevent and treat blindness. The Lions also contribute to the Leader Dog program; which over a period of 18 months, trains seeing eye dogs and their blind masters to work and live together. Slidell Lions Club also has an eyeglass-recycling program that collects, classifies and then ships these glasses to poorer countries. The Slidell Lions contribute to the Louisiana Lions Camp for Handicapped and Diabetic children. This program provides free tuition for a weeklong summer camp experience in Pineville, LA, where there are three counselors for every child to ensure each child gets a true camp experience that they would otherwise not be able to do. It also provides the parents a week long respite from the demands of caring for their handicapped or diabetic child. This camp has positively changed the lives of so many children in our state. In order to conduct and contribute to all of these programs, the Slidell Lions Club relies on several fundraising activities throughout the year: • $6 PANCAKE BREAKFASTS - held at the den on the last Saturday of each month from 8-11am. • AFTERNOON BINGO - held at the den Thursdays, 2:30 pm. • TOUCH A TRUCK - annual children’s event held at the Fremaux Town Center in November. Please join in at these wonderful events and help the Lions support the less fortunate in our community, state and the world. The Lions are always looking for new members to join in serving. The Lions meet every Thursday at the Lions Den for a threecourse lunch meal (valued at $15) included in your dues. Join them in serving others!

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“These are the MEMES of our lives” Instead of boring you with a bunch of paragraphs describing the daily ins and outs of my home and family life, I decided to go another route. But I will save it for the end. It’s a fairly new form of communication, and it is all the rage! Don’t want to find a feeling or an explanation? Now you don’t have to! Just send a meme! Most of us have not had the “luxury” of growing up with generational memes that tell us how we should feel about each stage of our lives. They are sort of like little nuggets of “wisdom,” fortune cookies of social media, if you will. They are meant to be funny, inspirational, anger-inciting, mind-changing, sweet, or hopeful. Regardless of their intent, ALL of them are meant to be thought-provoking. You might not even know you are passionate about the mating habits of the albino red-eyed tree frog until you see a meme telling you it’s important! Memes are like the fast food of communication. Just pull up to the screen and order whatcha like! 44

Maybe a romantic meme with a side of innuendo? A large bowl of passive aggressiveness sprinkled with some politics? You name it, they’ve got it! And they come complete with a background of your choice, to further the point you are trying to make! Can’t beat that, right? Well, the problem in my mind is this - unless you have created your own meme, they aren’t truly your words, your thoughts, or your pictures, and it can become way too easy to start clicking and sending something out there several times a day that you didn’t give much time or consideration to. It could be damaging, for yourself, and others. I’ve seen it many times. I’ve done it many times. The unintended side-effect of the meme generation, thanks to social

media, is that we get a rare inside look at a person’s psyche. But guess what? The memes that you share also give everyone, including your latest crush, your new boss, and YOUR CHILDREN, a very private view of what they assume is your state of mind. Your beliefs. Maybe you didn’t quite agree with EVERY word in that long quote you posted, but oops, you already posted it, and someone already saw it, whether you take it back or not. I have become much more private about what I post on social media over the last couple of years because, sadly, people can be ugly and judgy and can read into your life and words way too much. Maybe I am old, but I feel like the line between what is real and what isn’t is rapidly becoming invisible. They are merging together to form this sorta semi-fake existence, and frankly, dumbing us down a bit. You know what they say - “You are what you eat.” Well, it can be said that, “You are what you meme.” Let’s take a look-see at just a few of the typical memes that can backfire:


The “Passive Aggressive” Meme: This is one that we are probably ALL a little guilty of posting. You’re pretty upset, yet, not really brave enough to call someone out to their face. But you know that they know that you know! Or possibly, they never even saw it because they have better things to do. But hey, you acted on an angry emotion, you’re validated, and damnit, you feel better for it! Well, until tomorrow that is. When the same problem is still there, you’ve lost some integrity, and now look uglier than the person that angered you in the first place. My two cents: Vent to a friend. Do some pushups. Pray for that person that you would rather hit in the face with a baseball bat. People only hurt others because, at some point in their life (most likely before you came along), someone hurt them. Not for one second do I believe this is an easy thing to do either. Forgiveness, for me, is actually my most difficult challenge.

The “My Life is SUCH a Blessing” Meme: You know the ones. On Facebook, they have the perfect husband, Honor Roll kids, an orderly home, and a healthy social life of beautiful friends that all meet up at the gym 3 times a week. However, in real life, their marriage is falling apart, their kids are assholes, and the only thing that is most likely holding them together are the very memes they post. I could sugar coat it, but that would be defeating the purpose of describing this particular meme. This truly only hurts the person that posts it. Pretend worlds don’t solve real problems, they just look good to a bunch of people that don’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. And if you have kids, they will learn to handle life the same way. If you really are that blessed all the time, then please, disregard. But really, quit making the rest of us look like such a mess, k? My two cents: T-H-E-R-A-P-Y. A date night... With your husband. Or your kid. Or a trusting friend that you can be real with, but more importantly, can be real with YOU.

A good friend will tell you about yourself, and they will only do it out of love. The “Sick to my Stomach” Love Meme: I want to believe there is absolute truth when someone posts these. And I really do hope they feel this way about the person they are proclaiming their love for. Who doesn’t love Love? If so, (and this is just an idea) maybe they could tell them, I don’t know, in PERSON? Without an audience? Call me old school. But, I’ve seen it. A significant other privately bashes them, but then, publicly dotes on them. All on the same day even. Sometimes, when they are sitting right there in the same room! This is the world we are living in. It’s crazy! Who are we REALLY living our lives for? It’s OK to publicly confess your love in a sappy, overdone way, maybe once a year or so, if you feel the need. But do it for the right reasons. My two cents: If it isn’t jealousy issues possibly bordering on mental abuse, then may I suggest the next meme on this list? In moderation, of course.

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The “Overly Sexual Memes for ordinary people”: Want a fun way to spice things up? Send your spouse a random, sexy, half-naked couple, beautifully kissing in a steamy position, behind a sexually-passionate-filled quote. Do this throughout the day. Add a few memes in-between that stir up some intellectual foreplay as well, because smart is sexy. Choose one with a pretty background of somewhere you would both rather be too. Who doesn’t fantasize about a vacation? Just remember, moderation! Don’t over-do this one. Because when you both get home at the end of a tiring day, there will be a lot of measuring up to do for two ordinary folks that struggle to find their own words most of the time. Also, the big mirror and not so flattering florescent lighting during that awkward bathroom quickie, while the kids are doing homework? It will be the TRUE background scene. SO, make sure your background meme looks better than you do. This approach works for some, it can be interesting, and hey, at least the public isn’t involved. For me, that would be a tall order to fill on a regular basis, and honestly, I have a headache.

My two cents: Use the meme, don’t abuse the meme. Keep it in your back pocket. Lastly… The “Political” Meme: These will make you laugh, depending on what side of the coin you are on, but basically, nothing good comes of them. Just a really long, painful comment section, some unfriending, and a passive aggressive meme follow-up on the pages of many. My two cents: Nothing wrong with a little political opinion, if that’s your thing. It’s not mine. Debate don’t hate, is probably a good rule of thumb. It rhymes at least. But if in meme form, it’s most likely going to have some hate, and even less facts. That’s it. A short list that may help someone along the way. If people are going to place screens in front of their faces for the majority of the day and call it “life,” then it’s probably time to change the scenery some. And if we find that it still isn’t manifesting much positivity, or that almost-invisible line isn’t personally becoming any clearer, well, life will still be waiting there on the other side. In the meme-time, to add a little humor and positivity to what I believe turned into a very serious subject, my husband and I decided to create a few of our own memes, using our own personal photos from over the years, and our own words. Because I don’t always meme, but, when I do, I make sure I do it privately with my husband, then, share it with complete strangers. Click responsibly.

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Old Age Care My staff has heard me say over and over, “Age is not a disease.” This is an adage taught to me in veterinary school, and I imagine many other vets use it in the course of an average day. For me, it means that we shouldn’t look at an older pet who has started to slow down, or to exhibit certain symptoms, and respond by just saying, “He’s old, what can you expect?” Any number of behavior changes or symptoms might be dismissed, or written off as “just old age.” But we owe it to our pets to determine if there’s anything we can do to improve their quality of life, even (or should I say especially?) if they are showing signs attributable to certain conditions that are more likely to be present once they’ve reached a certain age. Liver disease, kidney disease, heart and lung

conditions, arthritis, and cancer all occur more frequently in older patients, although many geriatric pets may not have any of these. Old age, in and of itself, is not a disease. For our geriatric pets, none of these conditions, nor even a combination of them, necessarily rules out surgery or advanced treatments. Many pet owners focus on the potential risks of anesthesia, and so avoid treatments that require it, such as dental extractions, in older pets. However, in the past 20 years, veterinary anesthesia has advanced significantly. There is now widespread use of pre-op testing, safer anesthetic gases, monitoring equipment, intravenous fluids, dedicated operating room nurses / technicians, and pain control administered before,

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during and after procedures, to provide comfort and reduce surgical stress, all as standard practice. Even so, some clients still wrestle with the decision of whether or not to pursue surgery or certain treatments for their senior pets. Given the years of devotion and companionship, how does one decide whether or not to go forward with a given course of action? The best medical option is often pretty obvious, but in many, if not most cases, there are other things to consider. As a veterinarian and pet owner, the decision is one I’ve struggled with as well. No one can tell another pet owner what the right course of action is in a particular situation. I try to get my clients thinking about a few factors when they’re faced with difficult decisions regarding older, ailing pets.


*Does the cost of the surgery or treatment adversely affect the owner's finances in the short or long term? As much as we love and cherish our pets, I don’t believe that anyone should run massive charges on credit cards in order to pay for advanced treatments. Many times I have heard clients decide not to treat what seems like a straightforward problem because they still are wrestling with buyer’s remorse over a decision to go the distance with a previous pet. Because of this, I’m careful to review the advantages and disadvantages to a treatment and, where possible, give a range of options. Sometimes we must choose to do less; what we need to be clear on is that less treatment may provide a less-thandesirable result. *Does the surgery or treatment give the patient the potential for a significant amount high-quality life? If treatment only prolongs life for a few weeks or months, or requires additional, expensive, or chronic therapy, the decision to go forward may need to be adjusted. Major surgery in cases of cancer, for example, may be considered a success initially, if a tumor is removed and the patient survives. But the possibility of post-operative debilitation, or continued presence of cancer, with recurrence and/or death soon after, must be considered beforehand. A clear understanding of prognosis and potential outcome after surgery is crucial. *What will be the requirements for after-care or additional treatments, and can the individual or family provide them? It is the rare geriatric patient who goes home after significant surgery and bounces back quickly. Especially for older pets, there may be days where the patient needs to be carried outdoors in order to eliminate. Then, too, medications may need to be given at specific intervals. Before agreeing to surgery or treatment, these requirements need to be known and considered. *Is the surgery, treatment and after-care taking place in a suitable environment? Many senior dogs and cats have issues that can impact anesthesia and recovery requirements and an individual hospital may not be equipped to provide the necessary after-care. Veterinarians want a successful outcome, so if the recommendation is made to refer the patient to a specialty hospital, know that it’s in the best interest of your pet. *What are arrangements for post-surgery recovery? In many cities, the days of an animal sitting alone in a cage overnight in a veterinary hospital post-surgery are long gone. However, in some places, this still might be the only local option. Giving your older pet the best after care might require you to drive a distance to a facility that can provide better options. Are you willing and able to do so? There are many advanced procedures, including dental care, chemotherapy or radiation for some cancers, orthopedics, and other major surgeries that may provide relief, or even a cure, for serious conditions that adversely impact a senior pet’s quality of life. Being an informed owner and collaborating with your veterinarian offers the best chance for a decision that is right for you and your pet.

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OUT TAKES

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Slidell Magazine was EVERYWHERE this month! Here are just a few of our adventures!

ael’s. Goodwill styling and dining at Mich Gonzales, elle Ang & d Cha l-r: rs! ome The BEST cust , hier Pont erly Ricky Robin, Kimb (Cuban Pete) Chef Michael, Hope & Ryan Robin

Slidell Magazine Editor Kendra Man ess celebrates the first White Line n Night poster (and Slidell Mag’s Septem ber cover) with artist Matt Litchlite r and his wife Rachel. Beautiful painting Matt!

Two of our favorite people - they make a hot summer’s night a coo l place to be! Police Chief Randy Fandal and his lovely wife Dania enjoy White Line n Night in Olde Towne. Get well soon Chief!

East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity RET IRED Executive Director Debbie Crouch at her retirement party. CONGRATULATIONS DEBBIE!!

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up!! This girl cracks us writer, e an Ins y ml om Crimi-M r own he s te ea cr Leslie Gates, -life ue tr n memes using her ow ments)!! ica ed pr d (an pictures

GO SAINTS! Cheering on the Black & Gold at the Chamber’s Fan Up Pep Rally in the Harbor Center. l-r: Kendra, Gary Crouch, Fire Chief Chris Kaufmann with wife Pam, Marc and Barbara Zoerner (in back), Debbie Crouch and Bernie Friel. Whew! It was a party!

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A Taste of Olde Towne WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 25 "FARM TO TABLE" WINE DINNER 2200 Block of Carey Street Five chefs working up a 5-course dinner of local, farm fresh ingredients Limited to 100 seats! Live music by Adam Bock $100 per person all inclusive THURSDAY OCTOBER 26 VINTNER DINNERS Chateau Bleu, Michael's, Restaurant Cote', & Southern Char Steakhouse Enjoy a 4-course, wine-paired meal Call restaurants for reservations $80 per person all inclusive FRIDAY OCTOBER 27 GRAND TASTING, 7- 9PM Sponsored by Slidell Mayoral Candidate Bruce Clement East St. Tammany Chamber, 1808 Front Street Over 40 wines, light bites & a signature wine glass under the big tent Live Entertainment by NYCE! $40 per person SATURDAY OCTOBER 28 PREMIUM TASTING, 5 - 7PM The Wine Garden at 300 Robert Street Our fine wine tasting, hors d'oeuvres, plus a signature wine glass. Limited to 100 attendees! Live music by Christy & the Rascals $50 per person SUNDAY OCTOBER 29 CHAMPAGNE JAZZ BRUNCH, 10:30AM Chateau Bleu Enjoy a delicious brunch, champagne & mimosas Limited seating by reservation 985.641.1610. Live jazz by Steppin Up $40 per person

Info & Tickets at: www.ATasteofOldeTowne.com

Slidell Magazine - 87th Edition  
Slidell Magazine - 87th Edition  
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