Could reader’s tablecloth really be a military parachute?

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DEAR SUN SPOTS: My mother left me a tablecloth that was supposedly made from a military parachute from one of the World Wars, probably WWII. I’d like to confirm her story but haven’t had much luck. Do you or your readers have any knowledge of recycled military parachutes? — Wanda, no town.

ANSWER: After some research, Sun Spots found that parachutes were commonly repurposed during and after the war because silk, cotton, and nylon were all in short supply. Some women even repurposed their fiancé’s parachutes into wedding dresses (tinyurl.com/3fmwn5a). It makes sense that a large and scarce piece of fabric would be used for something useful, like a tablecloth. 

If anyone has any knowledge about the repurposing of WWII parachutes or has a story of their own to share, please write to Sun Spots.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: We went to the Androscoggin Fallen Angels roller derby match in March and had a great time. Do you know if there are other matches scheduled? — No name, no town.

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ANSWER: According to their Facebook page, the Androscoggin Fallen Angels roller derby team is currently training but will announce their next public bout on their Facebook page, facebook.com/AFAROLLERDERBY.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Loaves and Fishes’ Spring Fling Vendor Fair will take place on Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 855 Lisbon St. in Lewiston (behind Staples at the Bingo Hall) from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. There are still openings to rent a table for this event. There will be no competing specialty vendors, tables are on a first come, first pay basis. Fees are due with registration to guarantee space. For more information, please call Marie Hebert at 207-740- 0244.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: A special collection was held in February at Catholic churches throughout the Diocese of Portland and raised $56,500 to support the long-term efforts of Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) as they provide aid to victims after the widespread destruction of Hurricane Matthew.

The hurricane first made landfall in Haiti on October 4, 2016, eventually devastating areas in the Caribbean and the southeast coast of the U.S. Over 1,000 deaths and massive damages were attributed to the storm.

The funds will be used to continue and expand the relief work of CRS and CCUSA. The response has included providing emergency shelters, hygiene kits, hand-washing stations, financial assistance to families in need, and living supplies like kitchen utensils and buckets. Helping with the rebuilding of destroyed homes and restoring lost agricultural fields are projects that are expected to take years to complete.

For those who still wish to donate to the relief efforts, visit www.crs.org or www.catholiccharitiesusa.org., call 1-877-435-7277, or, to donate by mail, please send a check or money order to: Catholic Relief Services, Attn: Hurricane Matthew Relief, P.O. Box 17090, Baltimore, MD 21297-0303.

For more information, contact Dave Guthro, Communications Director for the Diocese of Portland, at 207-321-7810 or dave.guthro@portlanddiocese.org.

Use the QR code to go to Sun Spots online for additional information and links. This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can be emailed to sunspots@sunjournal.com, tweeted @SJ_SunSpots or posted on the Sun Spots Facebook page at facebook.com/SunJournalSunSpots. This column can also be read online at sunjournal.com/sunspots. We’ve joined Pinterest at pinterest.com/sj_sunspots.

A worker hanging parachutes at a manufacturing company in February 1943.

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