Sun Journal on March 25, 1998

Read more about March 25, 1998, in the archives.

100 Years Ago: 1923

One-fifth of all the women in the country earn their own living and some of the married ones earn a much better living than they get.

50 Years Ago: 1973

Tuesday, United Methodist Women’s Day will be held at the Auburn United Methodist Church Tuesday under the auspices of the United Methodist Women. Members are invited to bring with them friends, neighbors or any interested woman for an all day program which will open with a get acquainted hour at 9:30 am.

Project workshops will follow and leaders will be on hand to work with the sewers, knitters, hand crafters, etc. or those who wish they were асcomplished in these fields. Those attending will bring sandwiches, and beverages will be served by the hostess group.


A brief business meeting is to be held at 1:30 pm, and the program for the afternoon is entitled “Our Life Together Pilgrimage.”

A nursery will be provided. UMW president Ella McClanin, has coordinated arrangements for the day.

25 Years Ago: 1998

If there is one thing Mainers learned during Ice Storm ’98, it’s that sometimes you have to rely on neighbors, or even complete strangers, to survive.

In Lewiston Tuesday, a half dozen average Maine citizens were hailed as ice storm heroes and publicly thanked for their Samaritan efforts while most of the state was crippled for two weeks in January. “Today is a wonderful day because we are able to give awards to people who decided they could help other people out,” said the Rev. Jerry Begin. “It’s nice to know that in times of emergency, we can count on our neighbors.”

The six awards recipients were thanked, applauded and given $100 in recognition for random acts of kindness during the January ice storm.


Samaritans are: A Lewiston boy, 15-year-old Dustin Trider, praised for taking responsibility for two family homes and caring for a stepmother and grandmother while most of the state was without power. Donna Brooks, the teen-ager’s mother, said Trider lugged wood to keep fires going at homes in Lewiston and Leeds while the state lingered in darkness from a wide-spread power outage. Trider melted snow to provide water to flush toilets and cooked meals on a grill to prepare hot food for his family. “He was taking the initiative in all of this by himself,” said Brooks. “He wasn’t acting like a 15-year-old at all, he was acting like a man.”

William Hird, owner of the Chickadee Restaurant in Turner, honored for dishing up hot meals to residents of The Odd Fellows Home in Auburn. The elderly residents had been eating canned food while the home went for more than a week without  power. They were taken to the restaurant to revive their spirits and Hird refused to let them pay for their meals.

Ray Berube, who friends and neighbors said went without sleep while helping out others during the  storm, was awarded for his efforts Tuesday. Berube helped get neighbors cars out from under weakened branches, loaned out his kerosene heater and took a generator from home to home to power furnaces. “He didn’t get much sleep that weekend and his good deeds will never be forgotten, those who nominated Berube said.

Roger Jacques, who postponed surgery to replace both of his knees  so he could be available to help others tough it out through the ice storm. “Every morning. Roger would start at about fout in the morning to go from house to house with a generator and sit while each home was warmed up, according to the woman who nominated him. “He did this for three family homes as well as the homes of several others and, of course, he refused to be compensated.

Jeanette Libby heard that a neighbor on disability was without heat and electricity and was very close to a serious health situation while the storm raged on. By the ninth day of power outages, Libby helped her neighbor to purchase a generator to get the furnace going and restore lights. After the generator was hooked up, Libby continued to call her neighbor every night to check her. “Jeanette is forever a great friend for life,” said Paul Gerry, who nominated Libby.

Dick Robert was awarded and thanked Tuesday for lugging a generator from home to home in the Twin Cities area and providing heat and lights to chilly families. “He drove from house to house for days, sacrificing not only his time, vehicle and expenses, but also several business days of income without a second thought,” said Michelle Roberts, his daughter. “My father’s generator warmed many houses during the ice storm and his selflessness warmed many hearts.”

The awards were presented Tuesday after the L-A Action Group and Northern Utilities sought out nominees through word of mouth and local advertising.

The material used in Looking Back is produced exactly as it originally appeared although misspellings and errors may be corrected.

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