Coming Back

From Gazette editions of May, 1986:

Tisbury voters returned former selectman Cora S. Medeiros to the board after rejecting her comeback efforts twice in the last two years. Mrs. Medeiros attributed her victory over electoral newcomer Donald Mayhew and board of appeals chairman George Silva to “a great group of people working for me,” her two previous terms on the board and a townwide desire for stability in dificult times. “I think people felt they needed somebody with a little experience in the office. She will join a board made up of the people who defeated her in 1984 and 1985 — David Araujo and Suzan D. Custer.

In the biggest upset of the Vineyard town meeting season, Jonathan E. Mayhew defeated longtime selectman Elizabeth Ann Bryant in the Chilmark election. Mr. Mayhew, who announced a sticker campaign against Mrs. Bryant just seven days before the election, won by a margin of 43 votes. Commenting on his surprise victory, Mr. Mayhew said: “It was a very tense election. I felt there was a real possibility that I was going to win when I got a lot of positive response during a phone campaign. “

Mrs. Bryant said she is not bitter about the election. “It must have meant it was time for me to get out of town hall, because it was clearly a political issue. I don’t think anyone can fault how hard I worked. No one but me out of the three selectmen was ever willing to take on the extra work, like the county budget and the site review committee. Now the town’s problems are someone else’s problems and I am relieved.”

An old friend of the Vineyard returned this week, many thousands of nautical miles and nearly 12 years later. The Star Pilot, a 62-year-old Boston pilot schooner measuring 125 feet overall is moored in Vineyard Haven harbor. She left Edgartown harbor in the fall of 1974 for a world cruise. In that year, her crew planned to circumnavigate the globe. She was to pass through the Panama Canal and head either through the Suez Canal or the Cape of Good Hope, up to Europe and back. Neither the crew or vessel ever completed that trip around the world. Instead the vessel turned back in the South Pacific after halfway completing its trip, after suffering one misfortune after another. She changed owners many times afterwards, spent several years in Honolulu and time in San Francisco and Mexico before returning to New England waters. In Vineyard Haven this week, many old-time Vineyarders came to the waterside to see the vessel. Said Nathaniel E. West of Machine and Marine, “After all she has been through it is good to see she is still sailing.”

The Pilot was designed by W. Starling Burgess and built by the J.F. James Shipyard in Essex in 1924 as a Boston pilot ship. In the fall of 1974 the ship left Edgartown en route around the world with Capt. Gordy van Nes, Richard Hall and Mr. Schettler. Among the 16 crew members were Mrs. van Nes and Mr. Hall’s children.

Dietmar and Christine Goessweiner and their three boys got their Martha’s Vineyard vacation early this month, just over a week after news of the disaster at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the Ukraine reached them in their home in Vienna, Austria. The family packed up for a three-week visit with Mrs. Goessweiner’s parents, Pat and Isabel West, at Tashmoo. They came back to the United States, they said, to protect their children’s health. Although the radioactive material which was spewed into the environment after the April 26 Soviet reactor accident was never considered life-threatening in Austria, the Austrian government imposed severe precautionary restrictions on the activities of children. The restrictions were issued after the wind carried the radioactive material southeast from Kiev toward Austria. Both the Goessweiners applauded the position of the Austrian government on nuclear power, which, in 1979, was to block the operation of the first plant when public opposition erupted.

Compiled by Cynthia Meisner