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  • Writer's pictureFrank Finamore

From Frank ... Feeling Nostalgic

It seems that the older I get the more nostalgic I become. I’m reminded of a Christmas gift given to me as a child five decades ago by Miss Davies. She was a friend of my mother’s and a schoolteacher who never seemed to tire of being around children. There’s so much to share about how engaging and thoughtful she was, but on this Christmas Eve, I’ll reflect on just one special story that, for me, captures the essence of the holiday.

Our Santa drove a '68 Mercury

It was 1971, and Miss Davies drove up in her yellow 1968 Cougar with flip headlights (car buffs remember these details!) to deliver small envelopes to me and my six siblings which she quietly tucked into our stockings. On Christmas morning, we were excited to find a gift certificate to Kinney Shoes for each of us. This couldn’t have been easy to afford on her teacher’s salary, but somehow Miss Davies managed and made those gifts a priority that year.

In a house with seven kids, we could certainly use the shoes, so the gift was indeed needed. But what was most memorable, however, was the smile on her face when we opened those envelopes and later when we picked out our shoes on our trip together to the shoe store. Her joy in doing something for others was apparent and has had a lasting effect on my life and the choices that I make. The shoes lasted a few seasons at best, but her smile is etched in my memory forever. I learned, through her example, that doing something for others also nourishes my soul.

1,500 acts of kindness from Village volunteers

In 2021, Village volunteers have completed 1,500 acts of kindness. That’s a lot of practical needs met, but it’s also a lot of smiles and love shown to others. My heart is full. I couldn’t be more appreciative of the work of our volunteers who keep the spirit of giving alive all year long. Thank you! Happy holidays and please stay safe.

Frank Finamore is Executive Director of the Village

P.S. Miss Davies now resides in a memory care facility. She seems content and we speak on the phone every few months. I frequently remind her of this story and the lessons she taught me. I hope one day soon to be able to see her smile again when it’s safe to visit.


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