Memorial Day weekend never really ends — the power, the patriotism, the prayers for our service people through all our wars and conflicts. Because his birthday is this week, and because he is a stellar guy from an amazing family, I would like you all to acknowledge Billy Kingsbury who served as an Army Ranger, a Green Beret, in the Viet Nam conflict. Billy returned at a time when many of us didn’t have the grace or knowledge to accept that Billy wasn’t part of the problem, he was trying to serve as part of the solution. A shout out to the wonderful Kingsbury family. Bill was disabled in the conflict, but it hasn’t stopped him from being a great father and a great citizen and a grand addition to our Island.

I am very impressed with our leader here in New York, Bill DeBlasio. He promises to end homelessness among veterans in New York city by the end of this year. Tune in and I’ll let you know if he’s just being a politician or if he really is going to do it.

Liz Figueroa and David Gardella arrived on Martha’s Vineyard Friday night, catching the last boat after quite a battle with traffic from Brooklyn to Woods Hole. This was Liz’s first visit ever. She is a special needs teacher in Brooklyn and I can tell all her students love her and are well served by her. David has not been here in 15 years. He remembered some things but found many changes. David is an athletic director at a Brooklyn school and statistician for the Knicks and the Nets. They were invited to stay with their good friends, the Giambois of Edgartown. On Saturday they hopped a bus to see the sights in downtown Edgartown. One of the first things they saw was the Vineyard Gazette classic truck. They started at the Amity Diner for a bite to eat, then proceeded to Larsen’s Fish Market in Menemsha for more taste tests. David had lobster bisque and a stuffed quahaug. After that they came to Our Town where they stopped at Auntie Nancy’s home and visited with Teri. They toured her greenhouse and her many fine improvements on the property. They walked through Main street and passed through Oak Bluffs to check out the Gingerbread cottages. On Sunday nothing would do but to tour the Gay Hea Light. They did not mention swimming. As you know, our Island tradition says you must at least jump in from the pier, the jetty or the bridge on Memorial Day weekend, clothed or not. Hmm. I shall have to bring this quaint custom to their attention. They promise to return so we have another converted Gardella.

Tammy Morrison Glenn who runs the Cooking on Martha’s Vineyard Facebook group outdid herself this weekend with recipes, pictures and party tips. She is a wonder and she will accept you if you ask to join this very fun group.

Dr. James Weiss has served for 10 years as our superintendent of schools on Martha’s Vineyard. But he has been an educator for 40 years and that’s how we got such good care and service under his time here. Tickets are available at all schools and at the superintendent’s office to join a celebration of his time and work at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury on July 25. Get your tickets now, they will not be sold at the door. And thank you, Mr. Weiss.

On Friday, May 29, the birthday bandwagon pulls along Bill Kingsbury and Marina Kaufman. May 30 sees Noah Aidan Meyer Von Bremen turn five! And Olivia Gomez Blanco becomes a glorious six! May 31 is for a dear friend, Tamma Cimeno. June 2 is shared by Louisa Leuning, Anna Nivala, Linda Alley, and Abby Quinn. June 3 smiles on Taylor Pierce, Sarah Lolley, Chaya Rubenstein, Bill Blakesley, Justin Smith, Arthur Battistini, Myra Stark and Raiver da Costa. And on June 4 Ben Crimson, Peggy Tileston, Arthur Lenna and Josh Kochin take the cake. Many happy returns.

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