Oakwoodites still don’t greet friends with: “How are you?” They still ask: “How long were you without power?” The ‘average’ answer is: “Eight days.” And then there’s Oakwood’s former Police Chief, and then City Manager, Mike Kelly. Mike’s answer (at National City Bank) on last Monday (day nine):”We’re still without power! We live in Kettering.”
When the Head-Farmer at The Farm on Ridgeway, Leo Mayauskas, arrived with his ‘produce delivery’ last week his answer to the ‘power question’ was: “We didn’t even realize there was a ‘power outage’…John (Gray) put in a large generator when he built the house, so he and M.J. were A-OK.” And John & M. J.”s tomatoes, onions, red peppers…were delicious!
The ‘Ham-Lets’ play reading group lost their ‘star’ actress last week – Doris Skipton. Rev, John Koepke, who, incidentally, is one of the ‘leading actors’ of Ham-Lets, conducted the services for Doris. Jack’s opening remarks began: “When I think of Doris – I smile. And as I continue to remember her – I laugh. That ‘look’ she’d give the audience…see, you’re all smiling and laughing! Isn’t this a great way to be remembered?”
Many ‘Ham-Lets’ were there – Marty & Harry Ebeling, Pete & Marge Kuntz, Don & Correne Moran, Jean & Jack O’Connell…
And ‘Doris’s ‘old ski-group’ was well represented: Stevie Adam, Jane Heywood, Wise Glossinger, Lorrie Streit, and ‘all the Coughenour Kids’ – Dan, Jr., Candy. John, and Tom.
Dale Skipton, the ‘eldest’ of Doris and Dr. Robert Skipton’s three children, spoke for his sister, Joan, and brother, David. “When we were kids we reveled at being included with so many of you here today - when you skied at Otsego. Thanx to Mary Barker who was our ‘ring-leader’ – we found a way to sneak-into the balcony of the ‘adult party room’in the evening, and watch our parents …living-it-up.”
‘One night I say my Mother – as I’d never seen her before. She was wearing a hot-pink something…sitting atop the grand piano…with a drink in one hand and a cigarette in the other…Dr. Paul Pavey was playing the piano…and Mom was ‘belting out’ “Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets..” and she was terrific!”
“Following wild applause, Dr. Pavey said he had to be excused and another man took his place. The new piano-player asked my Mother to sing something else…and she did Again, thunderous applause. And then we saw a lady come up to con
gratulate Mom, and so did the piano—player. You could tell both were really impressed with Mom’s performance.’
‘Next day we asked Mr. Coughenour who those two ‘strangers’ were. ‘Oh, the lady was Charlotte Ford – who owns the place (‘The Ford’ family did own Otsego), and piano-player was – Dave Brubeck!”
Doris always bragged about being born in Brooklyn. Her father was in Vaudeville “…so I was raised in a dresser drawer cause we were always ‘on the road’. Mother said Dad appeared with so many old-well-known-troupers. One was Marie Dressler and Marie used to baby-sit with me!”
Doris’s friends all remember Mrs. Glover, Doris’ Mother – who came to live with the Skiptons in her later years.
Doris’ favorite quote: ‘The more finished and refined the character, the more striking is its individuality.’ - Ralph Waldo Emerson