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Ray Duckler
Rev. Robert Wood poses for a photo at the Havenwood Heritage Retirement Home in Concord, N.H., Sunday, June 7, 2015. Wood began speaking and writing for gay causes shortly after his ordination in 1951. He wrote "Christ and the Homosexual" (1960), which helped begin the dialogue between organized religion and the GLBT community. He was among the first clergymen to advocate for same-sex marriage. His partner of over 26 years, American abstract artist Hugh M. Coulter painted the painting behind him. He died in 1989. (Geoff Forester/The Concord Monitor via AP)

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 was a man of God, a clergyman, …

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 before his stand-up comedy show tomorrow night at the Flying Monkey in Plymouth. There are …

Ray Duckler: To know, or not to know, that is the question

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Is Harriet Cady fighting for transparency in government? Yes, she is. Is the 71-year-old Deerfield resident also, at times, a pain the butt? Well, it’s safe to say yes to that as well. On her side stands the …

Ray Duckler: Bruschi stops by to visit his friend

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

In 2005, Tedy Bruschi moved left, then went down, hard. But unlike so many other times in his NFL career, there was no crunching block involved, no wallop from an offensive lineman the size of a condominium, or …

Ray Duckler: Given a second chance, Ryan Pitts recalls the nine who died. . . forever

Saturday, March 14, 2015

We wanted to be near him, make eye contact with him, because we wanted to understand. Maybe we’d see something in Ryan Pitts’s eyes that would give us a clue as to how someone saves lives, loses friends …

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, …