It’s Thanksgiving week...

It’s Thanksgiving week...

        It’s Thanksgiving week - the time to appreciate the bounties of our harvests, our loved ones, our families, our friendships, and our lives.  Happy Thanksgiving to all, even those of you in Canada and the other continents where my e-mails arrive.

        Today, November 25th, is also the birthday of my girlfriend from college, Joan Turner. She died when the car I was driving was in a head on collision in Cumberland, Maryland. We were in our early 20’s in the 1980’s. It’s easy to feel sad but I’m trying to be grateful for the time we spent together, and for all the gifts of love and friendship she offered to so many people.

        Years ago I started, with the help of many friends, family, and classmates, a Scholarship in her name at our Alma Mater, The University of Charleston, in West (“By God!”) Virginia. The Scholarship has been endowed and has offered aid to students for many years. In the spirit of Thankfulness, I often receive a Thank You card from the Joan Elizabeth Turner Memorial Scholarship Fund recipient. We tried to present Joan’s persona in words and asked The University to choose a student who was like Joan.

        So the recipients are usually Biology Majors, getting good grades, aspiring to be a dentist or doctor, and incredibly involved in their college days through club memberships, charitable causes, and enthusiasm. It was always a joy to be around Joan, and from the notes I’ve received it’s obvious some of the recipients do share some of characteristics.

       If you would like to contribute to the Joan Turner Scholarship, you could donate online at or mail a check to The Joan Turner Scholarship Fund, The University of Charleston, 2300 MacCorkle Ave, SE, Charleson WV 25304. Maybe you need to make some charitable donations to get some tax breaks before the end of the year! If you do, send some money to the JETMSF and it will be a worthy charitable donation!

        I’m grateful for everything this Thanksgiving. My friend Cindy used to say something like “when you drink from the cup of sadness, as all of us do, remember that it allows the feelings of joy to compensate a bit.” Sadness and Joy.  You can’t have one without the other. It sounds great in theory, but not so easy to believe every day. So, this Thanksgiving, if you feel sadness for the loss of loved ones, try to feel gratefulness too. Easier, said than done, I know. But try, and maybe Natalie Merchant’s Thank you can put you in the right frame of mind.

       If you are in, around, or near New Orleans for Thanksgiving weekend, try to watch WDSU Television’s “Today Show” or “Ellen” or “WDSU News,” because will be airing one of our clips. For those of you who are far away from New Orleans, and can’t watch the shows and see our clip, on your big screen tv, we are posting it here:

        That’s all for this Newsletter. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and enjoy the good company of family and friends, old and new.

        We still have a lot of things to report about and this may very well astonish y’all, but this is the end of the newsletter.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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