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These folks were the backbone of The Wake Weekly starting

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Following up on my pledge last week to get more information on columnists for and from the newspaper, here goes:

First off, when I started at The Wake Weekly, it was under the careful watch by my big brother, Bill, 10 years my senior, who had just bought the newspaper interests and owned The Wake Weekly as a sideline job.

Brother Bill served his country for three years under Gen. George Patton in North Africa, Sicily and England in the communications section for the tough going general who was called “Blood and Guts” Patton because of his methods of leading his troops into battle. The men answered that calling with, “Yes, our blood, and his guts!”

Yes “Old George” was tough, but he got the job done. From what we have heard and seen in movies, He loved war and made no bones about it.

Brother Bill was presented the Bronze Star Medal, and his first lieutenant officer kept the line of communications open for a large unit of men while buzz bombs flew thick and fast overhead. Everyone else had evacuated, Gen. Patton presented the coveted awards and a photo was printed in Stars and Stripes newspaper, which was the Army’s newspaper that was distributed to all servicemen.

I will try to remember those columnists who stood out for many years serving their communities faithfully each week. Several didn’t drive a car and they relied on other members of the family to deliver the often handwritten weekly news column.

If I remember correctly, there was a special bond between the correspondent writing news for their individual communities and the people they served. Each writer would bend over backwards before they would print something unknowingly in error about anyone in their area of coverage.

I remember so well each correspondent like Mrs. Pauline Harding, wife of G. H. Harding, the dedicated longtime barber of downtown Wake Forest. She loved to write and she did it well, presenting many names of people in her Glen Royall community.

There was also Mrs. Gertie Jenks, who loved the waterfalls over the Falls Dam right below her home. The was no place under the sun where she would rather be than in her home porch right above the dam spewing out almost melodious music as many gallons water spewed out over the dam every minute of the day or night. She loved to grab every bit of the sound — like music to her ears. Mrs. Gertie also loved to have you accompany her on her porch. She liked to share the experience, and my mother loved to take advantage of her offer.

Mrs. Tessie Jackson, who had a son, Bennie in the Army, was as faithful as anyone could be, and both mom and pop were proud as punch to say anything about the handsome lad.

And then there was the Younger Set column, This & That, which had been written and started by Barbara HollowellI who married John Lyon and they both fit in so nicely — she with her father’s so-perfect grocery business. And he with his experience in the grocery business.

But then it became time for a change — a new correspondent in the name of Jean McCamy and after talking with my late wife, Peggy, said “yes” and Views and Reviews was born. Jean said she called it that because it seemed to cover most any subject that occurred to her, and at that point, she didn’t have a clue what she might be writing about.

That was 53 years ago and she’s still enjoying it, although some weeks it’s a bit of stretch. She also finds she is not probably reviewing some things she wrote about in the past, but “hopefully, with new ideas and observations. I do try to keep it to one page of type which is abut 350 words,” McCamy said.

Jean added, “It’s interesting, but not too surprising, that after raising about the same amount of children about the same ages, we are now enjoying grandchildren who are going through school together, from Montessouri through high school and even on to the same colleges, with UNC-Asheville seeming to be the school of choice.”

Bob Allen, publisher emeritus of The Wake Weekly, invites comments at 919-556-3959 or robertwallen29@gmail.com.

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