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Ray Duckler
Bom Rai talks with Hindu priest Beda Bidhi Subedi in the parking lot in Hooksett after the Nepal earthquake vigil last week. By the end of the vigil, Bom felt more comfortable being able to talk to local Nepalese and Bhutanese attendees.

(GEOFF FORESTER / Monitor staff)

Ray Duckler: An earthquake, far away, is felt close to home

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Not many world events could resonate with Bom Rai while he tries to build a new life in a new country. It took an earthquake to do that. That’s why Bom, a Nepalese refugee, attended a vigil last week in a Hooksett parking lot, in the shadow of a tattoo parlor and an orthodontist’s office. He joined other refugees in …

Greg Grappone, a father and survivor, dies at 35

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Greg Grappone, whose family began selling cars in the region nearly 100 year ago and now owns dealerships that line Route 3A in Bow, died yesterday from complications related to a rare form of cancer. He was 35. News of Grappone’s death was posted on the dealership’s Facebook page yesterday afternoon. According to …

Ray Duckler: Finding the good in something very bad

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Finding the positives here isn’t easy. Tomorrow night, though, starting at Merrimack Valley High School, you’re invited to participate in something good that came from something awful. This is the 10th edition of the Angels 5K Road Race, with proceeds going to local scholarships while, initially, celebrating the lives of Kristin Wagner and …

Honoring the nine who died

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Ryan Pitts of Amherst, who last summer was awarded the Medal of Honor, spoke about his experiences in Afghanistan this week in a dining room at the Red Blazer Restaurant. While the crowd came to thank Pitts for …

Ray Duckler: In 1990, a murderer’s mustache told us he was a kid

Friday, March 13, 2015

For what seemed like forever, that barely visible, wispy mustache was all over the place, not just beneath Billy Flynn’s nose. It was on every TV news show, on every talk show, on every back page of every …

Ray Duckler: Don’t be chicken; step right up and speak your mind

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

One night many years ago, a group of chickens hell-bent on revenge invaded the Northwood town meeting, pecking everything in their path. You could have knocked the residents over with a feather as the commando chickens fanned out …

Ray Duckler: For veterans, a place for support, rejuvenation

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Breathe, yoga instructor Helen McConnell told the group of eight veterans, each storing some form of emotional baggage. Stretch. Bend. Relax. Unpack. McConnell twisted the men, participating in a therapeutic process in Gilford this week, into pretzels, then …

Ray Duckler: Around here, some like the snow, while some like it hot

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

For Chris Spannweitz, the snow means cash in his pocket. For Jim Bashios, it means a pain in his tush. One is a private contractor who shovels roofs in a business he started last month. The other is …

Ray Duckler: A Porsche, a truck, a snowmobile? What would you buy?

Saturday, February 14, 2015

The salesman quoted me a price for the Porsche Boxster, a two-door silver convertible with a sound system that could reach Vermont. “Around $70,000,” he told me. “$69,712 actually.” “That’s it?” I said. I reached into my winter …

Ray Duckler: Kendall wins, on the mat and everywhere else, too

Thursday, February 12, 2015

He could have been a ringmaster or the lead in a Broadway show or a rock star on stage. And, in a sense, Concord High wrestler Kendall Thompson was all three last night, illuminated on the school’s basketball …

Ray Duckler: Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The latest forecast calls for more snow Thursday, and you know what I say? Snow what? If you can take it, snow can I. That’s my new outlook, after seeing the enthusiasm at the Super Bowl parade during …

Ray Duckler: The Eggman cometh, decade after decade

Sunday, February 8, 2015

I think Norman Rockwell would have painted Bert Southwick. In fact, I’m sure of it. Southwick grew up in Northfield and stayed there until he died one week ago at age 91. He lived at the same place, …

Ray Duckler: The Butler did what? Here’s hoping he brought spring

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

For me, Malcolm Butler, a household name by now, represents the spring equinox. Butler’s interception saved the Patriots on Sunday, helping them beat the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl, and it also ushered in the end of winter. At least I hope it did. Okay, it’s a …

Ray Duckler: For a Pakistani teenager, life is good

Sunday, February 1, 2015

I learned something this week, about a student from Pakistan who’s attending Bow High. I learned that senior Poonam Kumari is a teenager like any other teenager. Let her sing, dance and watch movies. Let her charm you …

Ray Duckler: A teacher, a student, a schooner, a film

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The schooner is the story. Or is it? Maybe it’s the people Keith King loved who have died, or the bumper sticker-like philosophies he espouses about life, or his unconventional method of teaching at Keene State College, or …