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Ray Duckler
Hands free sign on I-93 south near exit 15 in Concord.

(GEOFF FORESTER / Monitor staff)

Ray Duckler: Are you driving and talking hands free yet?

Saturday, July 4, 2015

With apologies to the Concord Police Department, I broke the law three days ago and got away with it. No one pulled me over for talking on my cell phone, held to my ear, which is no longer allowed under the state’s new hands-free statute. I never heard anything connected to the color blue, nothing about my bluetooth, no blue …

Ray Duckler: Fifty years ago, Robert Wood, a gay reverend, marched for those who would not

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Picture the man protesting 50 years ago, first in Washington, D.C., then a week later in Philadelphia. Picture him carrying a sign promoting equal rights for gay people, at the time openly referred to as fairies, fags and queers. Then picture the front collar, glowing white against his charcoal-colored suit, telling you this …

Ray Duckler: For Ginny Timmons, laughter is the best medicine

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Ginny Timmons got her days mixed up last week, missing our scheduled interview. That happens when you suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease. Nothing strange there. What seemed unusual, though, was Timmons’s reaction when reached by phone. “I’m at Wendy’s, waiting,” I told Ginny. “Like we’d planned.” “Dang disease,” Timmons said. Then she laughed, heartily. …

Ray Duckler: Comedian Dave Attell lands at the Flying Monkey

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Funny man Dave Attell is walking through Times Square in Midtown Manhattan, desperate for a pair of pants that don’t make him look fat. He’s on the phone with a writer from New Hampshire, looking for some press …

Ray Duckler: For refugee family, education a slow and challenging process

Sunday, June 7, 2015

For Devi Rai and her family, refugees from Bhutan, Becky Kidder had simple yet useful advice. When you can’t understand what people are saying, Kidder told Devi and the rest of her students recently, don’t be shy or …

Ray Duckler: What in the world was buried in that time capsule? Here’s a peek inside

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Erica Nason Ross is a 32-year-old teacher living in Andover, Mass. She gets one. Scott Sanel is a 43-year-old computer salesman living in Westwood, Mass. He gets one. And Barack Obama is a 53-year-old world leader living in …

Ray Duckler: Amy Dutton made an impact here. . . and over there, too

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Riley Bennett walked to her car on what had become a trail of tears, a road narrowed by cars on each side, turning it into a parking lot for those remembering Amy Dutton. An early arrival to the …

Ray Duckler: A look at the life of a Yankee

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Judson Hale is not a hugger. Never has been, never will be. There are cracks in his stoic armor, however, certainly more than his father once showed decades ago in a rich Boston suburb. This, the editor-in-chief of …

Ray Duckler: Fallen officers honored, led by a little girl with an old hat

Friday, May 22, 2015

One person, more than any other, stood out yesterday, her eyes hidden beneath a piece of history. One person, sitting in the front row, looked like the relative of a fallen officer, in a sea of relatives of …

Ray Duckler: Bet on Betsy, founded by kids, rocks in race

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Betsy Segal arrived in the conference room yesterday at 5:05 p.m., about an hour before the race, and slipped on a T-shirt made especially for her. “I feel so official now,” said Segal, shortly before the Rock ‘N …

Ray Duckler: Patriots owner Robert Kraft caves, leaving a foul smell

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Inhale deeply. Do you smell it, the pungent odor of B.S. that’s worked its way from San Francisco to Concord? My eyes are watering, my betta fish went belly up and I saw a bunch of cows in …

Ray Duckler: Running the Rock ‘N Race for David, Brigit and Danica

Saturday, May 16, 2015

They’re called David’s Angels, but let’s add two people to the mix. Let’s add Brigit McKeough and Danica Gage. That tells the whole story, the one about the parents who died too young, the little girl who’s since …

Ray Duckler: Deflategate? Tom Brady? Patriots lineman won’t tackle topic during visit to Concord

Thursday, May 14, 2015

I went hunting yesterday, for the elephant in the room. Or in this case, in the Abbot-Downing School gym. Sure enough, there was Dumbo, or Mr. Snuffleupagus, or Horton, or whichever name you choose, camouflaged by a New …

Ray Duckler: For Greg Grappone, mild manners said it all

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

You could almost feel Greg Grappone cringing at the attention. He was unpretentious and unassuming, never seeking the spotlight, always looking to fly beneath the radar, despite a highly visible surname that stared back at him, everywhere in …

Ray Duckler: Students and parents congregate to speak one language

Saturday, May 9, 2015

The food tables at Rundlett Middle School’s Around the World day made me hungry. The kids there made me hopeful. Kids like Rebecca Bamidele, an eighth-grader at Rundlett and a volunteer for the school’s Student Ambassadors program. I …