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Ray Duckler
Seven-year-old Luc Gautreaux, who has diabetes, poses for a portrait with his service dog, Shadow, outside Gilmanton Elementary School in Gilmanton on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015.

(ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

Ray Duckler: The highs and lows of a diabetic grade school boy

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Luc Gautreaux, 7, pulled off the top like a pen cap, exposing a pinpoint sharp enough to pop a balloon. He pricked the end of his index finger and squeezed, creating a tiny pool of blood, then smeared it onto a strip inserted into what looked like an old cell phone. His sister, Mellie Gautreaux, then took over, reading the …

Ray Duckler: In New York City, tis the season to be worried

Saturday, November 21, 2015

I worry about my family. They live near New York City, a 25-minute train ride from Grand Central Station. The site of the World Trade Center has been labeled Ground Zero for 14 years, and, beyond Washington, D.C., New York City is undoubtedly the No. 1 target in the minds of terrorists. So …

Ray Duckler: On Main Street USA, towers are a state of mind

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Eiffel Tower, shiny, silver and blinking, faced Main Street on Monday, giving reason to pause. If you saw it, in the window of Depot Antiques and Toys, how did it make you feel? Angry? Sad? Scared? What did you think about? The Twin Towers falling, perhaps? Christina Smith, daughter of the shop’s …

Ray Duckler: When it comes to raising money through Making Strides, we’re No. 1

Sunday, November 15, 2015

The volunteers for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer welcomed me downtown Thursday night for what they called an “appreciation reception.” They served shrimp cocktail, veggies and dip, and a heaping portion of praise, for both those who donated …

Ray Duckler: When celebrating bravery, always be on guard

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Lt. Col. Greg Heilshorn, the New Hampshire National Guard’s public information officer, was fooled, just like the rest of us. Those tributes to our veterans that Heilshorn had been watching during Boston-area sporting events? The feel-good ceremonies about …

Ray Duckler: Gilmore speaks, but is anyone listening?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Jim Gilmore, the invisible man among Republicans running for president, can thank Hillary Clinton for his sardine-can like press conference Monday. Ask Gilmore, however, about the attention he received in the State House, and he’ll tell you just …

Duckler: Brother’s kidney gave him 45 more years to live ... and counting

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Jim Blanchard wakes up in Concord each morning with his late brother and a cruel sense of irony nearby. Alan Blanchard’s kidney is filtering the blood in Jim’s body, cleaning it against all odds after transplantation surgery 45 …

Ray Duckler: Sanbornton officials tell residents to swap and shop some place else

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Lynn Chong, the main source powering an effort to keep a local tradition alive, pointed at the big dumpster to show an example of waste. “Look there,” the English teacher from Sanbornton said, with emphasis in her voice. …

Ray Duckler: Will Bill Gardner protect our primary against Howard Dean? Yeeaaaagh!

Friday, October 30, 2015

It’s not often Secretary of State Bill Gardner is at a loss for words. State politics? Buckle your seat belt. New Hampshire’s importance in the presidential nominating process? Cancel all appointments for the rest of the day. The …

Ray Duckler: Changes and words connected to the Bush campaign mean little, some say

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The news from Jeb Bush’s camp, in the days leading up to tonight’s Republican debate, sounded problematic for the former Florida governor. His staff had been reduced, salaries cut. His recent statements suggested frustration. And his polling numbers remained lower than a Donald Trump cheap shot at Megyn …

Ray Duckler: Objective reporting in context

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Objectivity in reporting doesn’t exist. Or, put another way, it’s in the eye of the beholder. There, I said it, and I feel better. Objectivity is a concept that’s drilled into us by some invisible journalistic bible, a …

Ray Duckler: This trick, pumpkins flying through the air, is a real treat

Friday, October 23, 2015

Steve Seigars can’t let it go, and there’s not much his wife Kathleen can do about it. He loves wearing his hard hat and turning on the hydraulic pump, with its loud-yet-tranquil hum. He loves watching the 30-foot …

Ray Duckler: No matter who you support, Biden’s departure has an impact here

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Did you hear the sighs Wednesday, after Joe Biden announced he would not run for president? Some represented sadness that their candidate declined to join the race. Others, supporters of someone else, were relieved that Biden chose not …

Ray Duckler: Policies change, but Guard members don’t

Monday, October 19, 2015

The undercurrent, not listed in the event’s six-page program, had been created two days before, with a change in foreign policy. We’d be spending more time in Afghanistan, President Obama had told us recently, with more troops than …

Ray Duckler: These pumpkins carry a lot of weight in Goffstown

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Kids aren’t the only ones who grow up fast. Pumpkins do, too. Just ask Jim Beauchemin of Goffstown, whose hobby is growing really big pumpkins, some of which you can see today at the Goffstown Regatta. Competitors will …