Elisha Smith was my son’s great grandfather. Chris Clark could not pronounce Elisha’s name when he was little, but he visited one of ’Lisha’s farms every Sunday and took to calling him “Papa Moo.” We all knew and loved Elisha. He was the total farmer. Elisha could hold forth on farming and taught many generations of his family his skills, but he was really a Renaissance man. Elisha loved people, events and the arts. He rose early to farm but could be caught in the evenings at Offshore Ale listening to live music, concerts at the Tabernacle and Union Chapel, Rotary Club events, the annual Scottish Society dinner and the ballet at the performing arts center in August. He was a friend, husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather and a pillar of the community. If you believe, as I do, in an afterlife, there is special acreage in heaven for farmers. It’s not a cloud with lute playing and endless ice cream sundaes, as some of us hope to be retiring to if we are worthy enough. It is an active working farm with cows to milk, chicken’s eggs to collect, crops to raise, hay to bale. All farmers want to do is work. Elisha, the consummate farmer, is still working hard right now.
Priscilla Dickson, another stalwart of our community, died last week. Who could say anything bad about Priscilla? She and her husband, Arthur, who predeceased her, were active and well-loved members of our community. Priscilla was a devoted homemaker and friend to all. She worked at Brickman’s for many years and always looked out for my son from before he was old enough to work there, and then, at last, when he did. Priscilla was an active member of my American Legion Auxiliary Post 257. Donations in her name can be made to American Legion Auxiliary, P.O. Box 257, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568.
I’m giving you a heads-up to mark your calendars and begin your collections for the annual Martha’s Vineyard Community Services electronics disposal day on Saturday April 6 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. This fundraiser for MVCS will help you get rid of ranges, refrigerators, computers, cell phones, washers, dryers, printers, laptops . . . you get the idea. Keyboards and mice are taken for free. Cost ranges from $1 to $30, with special discounts for truck loads. If you need the full list of accepted items, visit mvcommunityservices.com/EDD. The event is sponsored by Bruno’s. It is a great way to start your spring cleaning and meet your friends and neighbors. Volunteers are also needed to help. Sign up now.
While your calendars are out, fill in Saturday, April 13 at 5 p.m. at the P.A. Club in Oak Bluffs. You all know David and Karen Berube. Karen is having a terrible time with cancer and we need to help them out. But this is really a “fun fundraiser.” Trip Barnes will man the live auction. A silent auction, lasagna dinner, salad and dessert are included in your ticket price of $20. Call 508-693-3360 to save a ticket or you can purchase at the door. But wait! There’s so much more: music by Tristan Israel, Paul Thurlow, Nancy Jephcote and special guest, Joanne Cassidy. I’ll see you there. But if you can’t make it, your tax deductible donation may be sent to: You’ve Got A Friend, P.O. Box 1317, West Tisbury, MA 02575. Be sure to write Karen Berube in the memo section. Thank you.
The birthday bandwagon pulls along Deborah Stewart and Sandra Aparecida Gomes today. March 30 is a party for Eric Clapton, Michael Diamond, Marco Daniels, Abigail Chappell and Andrew Nelson. March 31 is shared by Rachel Pires and Laura Alexander. April 1 is claimed by Enoia Preia Dos Rei. April 2 belongs to Kate Desrosiers, Bob Kalayan, Bo Andrews and Kathy Daly. April 3 shines on Jim Reynolds, Denis Rogers and twins Chrissy and Charley Mcarthy. And on April 4 Amber Willoughby, Sue Rice and Tine Sonderby take the cake. Many happy returns.