Town Column

West Tisbury

By Hermine Hull
508-693-2525
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Posted March 15, 2007

Not long ago, Mike and I were talking about my being one of the only people we know who doesn't have a cell phone. I don't want or need one, my only concern being out on a walk and one of our dogs falling through the ice.

That conversation came to mind last night around dinner time, when we heard a call over the scanner for West Tisbury Rescue Personnel, Police, and EMTs to respond to Long Point, where two dogs and a man were in the water. Mike rushed out the door to get the truck. A couple had been walking their two dogs. The dogs ran out onto the ice and fell through. When the owner tried to help, he went in, too. A passerby ran to the caretaker's house and was able to call for assistance. The response was so quick that EMT Deb Cini said that when she arrived with the ambulance, the rescue guys already had the man out of the water. Both dogs and their owner are safe, although the man had to be stabilized at our hospital and airlifted off-Island. Jesse Oliver and Vincent Maciel were first at the scene, soon joined by Beth McIlheny, Louis DeGeofroy, Greg Pacheco, Manny Estrella, Jim Branch, Daniel Serusa, Dwight Kaeka, Bob Hennessy, my husband Mike, and EMTs Deb, Chris, and Bill Cini, Fran Bradley, Alex Schaeffer, Betsy McDonald, and Bret Sterns. I hope I didn't forget anyone. Everyone said that the rescue went perfectly, all their drills with the ice rescue boat and sled paid off, and everyone did a good job. Thank you all.

It's difficult to imagine that any ice is left, as yesterday and today have been balmy and sunny, perfect outdoor weather. I had my breakfast on the porch this morning. Mrs. Johnson's snowdrops and crocuses are in full bloom along the Edgartown Road, Vineyard Gardens has reopened, and I spotted Ernie Mendenhall driving his Miata (although not with the top down yet). The air really does feel lighter, as does my mood.

Marilyn and Warren Hollinshead are home from a long spell in Virgin Gorda. Marilyn claimed it was a perfect vacation; she was able to sit on the beach, read books, and do some writing. She and Warren both look very tan and relaxed, a good thing since their daughter Dana announced that she and Todd Gill became engaged and wanted their wedding at the family home this coming September 8. It will be a very busy summer for the Hollinsheads. Congratulations to Dana and Todd.

I took Murphy along in the car when Talley had her appointment with Dr. Jasny last week. Elise, the receptionist, has been asking for Murphy since we adopted him last year. She and his former family are good friends and Elise wanted to report on Murphy's "quality of life" in his new home. I think we passed. Mike had just brushed him so he looked particularly handsome, and his friendly exuberant personality was apparent. Of course, he barked his love to Connor and Liam.

Happy Birthday wishes go to Maureen Murphy Marton on St. Patrick's Day, to my brother Andrew on March 19, and our nephew Joshua on March 20.

This past Sunday afternoon was a special treat for, it appeared, most of West Tisbury who attended the final performance of "Bugsy Malone" at the West Tisbury School. I went with Sue Hruby, a former New Yorker, who felt nostalgic at the sight of the Empire State Building and Chrysler Building rising above the city skyline. Not only were the sets and staging fantastic, but the hard work of all the performers and behind the scenes people was so professional. It was a terrific performance.

Police Chief Beth Toomey was off-Island to attend a retirement party for Sgt. Frank Mueler at her former station in Northborough. She said it was a great party, more like a reunion, as many attending had been friends and colleagues since 1985. Even her former chief was there, happy and healthy in his retirement.

Bob and Maggie Schwartz hosted a lovely dinner party for all of the members of the Space Needs Committee and our spouses. We celebrated the almost-end of our work and the respect and affection that has developed between us. As our Chairman Chuck Hodgkinson often says, "We began this process as a group of strangers and we have become friends." Our final report to the town is at the printer's and we are planning for another public forum to be held before the Annual Town Meeting. Delicious lamb curry and easy camaraderie made for a pleasant evening.

If you would like to make shamrock leprechauns to decorate your St. Patrick's Day table, come to the West Tisbury Library this Saturday. The components will be out on a table all day and the library staff will be there to help. The Monday Night Movie is "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" with Katherine Hepburn and Sidney Poitier. It begins at 7 pm.

Enjoy the 40-50 degree temperatures predicted for this week and the lighter evenings. Maybe Mike and I will take the dogs down to the beach after work.