Life on Whidbey

It’s the people ...

I met some very nice people last week and called on some old friends to help me out of a jam. I was all set to enjoy a barbecue on Saturday with my co-workers when my car wouldn’t start.

Neighbors did their best to get it running, but to no avail. Then I called my friend JERRY McMILLAN, General Manager of Whidbey Island Volkswagen/Mazda, who suggested it was something electrical. “Those cars almost never have starter problems,” he said. “Just call A-1 Towing and have them bring the car to us.”

Bright and early on Sunday morning, I met MIKE CALIANDER from A-1 Towing. What a happy fellow for one who listens to people gripe all the time.

The next morning I heard a familiar voice on the phone, none other than KELLI TERRILL, Service Manager. She’s back after being away for a few years and now has ERIC GENTRY assisting her. Top mechanics RICK TERRILL and WILL VOGELMAN represent 25 years of experience between them.

They found the trouble with my car quickly and had me on my way to an important appointment by mid-afternoon. I’ve always been on the side of local businesses and this illustrates why. I don’t have the time or desire to drive to Mount Vernon or Burlington where the lights are on but there’s no one to serve you.

Thanks again to Jerry, Mike, Kelli, Eric and Rick.

Reliable sources …

CHRISTINA TERCERO is an Oak Harbor girl who worked her way up from intern to staff reporter at the Whidbey News-Times. She has left to attend graduate school at the prestigious University of Missouri School of Journalism. She will be teaching undergraduates at the university while working on her master’s degree. Eventually she hopes to report on international events.

Her position at the News-Times is being temporarily filled by summer intern ERIANNE BINGHAM, another Oak Harbor High School graduate. An English major, Bingham will return to Central Washington University in Ellensburg in September for her senior year.

Everybody loves Clancy ...

“I take Clancy visiting to lift people’s spirits,” said JOY THOMPSON of Oak Harbor. “Everyone smiles when they see Clancy.”

As a result of training received by Thompson and her animal teammate CLANCY, an Australian Shepherd dog, they are registered as a person-animal volunteer team qualified to provide animal-assisted activities.

Maybe you’ve seen them in the halls of Whidbey General Hospital where they visit with patients, or at Careage of Whidbey, clients at Day Break in Oak Harbor and students at Olympic View Elementary School.

Thompson and Clancy passed the Pet Partners skills and aptitude screening administered by licensed evaluator CHERYL SACKMAN and a health exam administered by JAYNE McKELVY, DVM, a practitioner at Best Friends Veterinary in Oak Harbor.

I applaud these two for their healing mission.

Grab those tickets ...

Tickets cost just 50 cents and are on sale at A Touch of Dutch for the next quilt drawing to benefit the Coupeville Food Bank. Last year’s event raised approximately $500, which food bank director Molly Hughes said goes a long way to feed needy families in Coupeville.

Misty Blanton, owner of A Touch of Dutch, is the mother of the idea. The quilt this year is an imported hand-stitched full/queen size with added matching shams and two needlepoint pillows, with a value of $300.

Thanks, ma’am ...

As folks stop in at the PBY Memorial Foundation office on Pioneer Way, they often leave a donation in the box. It was a day like any other when the widow of a former PBY crewman dropped off a check for $1,000. What a wonderful gift and morale boost to the volunteer teams. WIN STITES says “Thank you” again.

I’ll be back on Aug. 10, so send me your news. Until then, call me at 360-675-6611, email me at or drop off your news at the Whidbey News-Times.

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