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Ray Duckler
Patricia Pelletier shows her prosthetic legs she wears after her accident with a trolley car in Portland, Maine when she was a smalll child.

(GEOFF FORESTER / Monitor staff)

Ray Duckler: She’s as strong as ever

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Want to get on Pat Pelletier’s bad side? Suggest she use a wheelchair, or a cane, or a walker. That’ll do it. She doesn’t care that she lost the lower portion of both legs when a trolley ran her over in 1929, the day before her third birthday. And it doesn’t matter that she turns 89 next weekend, or that her prosthetics, old and worn, no longer fit properly, or that many of her neighbors at the Havenwood Heritage Heights retirement home are often wheeled to their meals. Pelletier is optimistic that Tuesday’s appointment at a clinic in Methuen, Mass. – run by a man …

Ray Duckler: Two years to the day, the doctor is in

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Today is David Hirsch’s anniversary. It’s been two years since the Concord doctor ran the wrong way on Boylston Street, toward the chaos and blood and death, near perhaps the most recognizable yellow stripe in the country. Two years since the good doctor showed the tunnel vision and heart of a marathon runner, …

Ray Duckler: 30 years ago, a CHS student took hostages and was killed by the police

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Pat Lena wondered if the gun was real. Scot Hayes did, too. So Louis Cartier showed them the cartridges inside, cracking open his double-barreled shotgun into the shape of a jackknifed truck, then snapping it shut with a tight click. “Does it look (f------) real to you?” Cartier asked, according to Lena. Soon, …

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 …

Ray Duckler: In Penacook, some work, some don’t as storm fails to deliver

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Darlene Junkins, who flexed both arms like Arnold Schwarzenegger to show off her New England toughness, sold hardware. George Blatsis sold salads and sandwiches. Mohammad Warraich sold convenience store stuff, mostly coffee and cigarettes. These merchants worked in …

Ray Duckler: Mounsey skates again, and people notice - again

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Her name wasn’t on the back of her jersey during the Black Ice Hockey Championship yesterday at White Park. Neither was the No. 2 Tara Mounsey wore during two Olympics, in 1998 and four years later. But the …

Ray Duckler: Is the Patriots controversy a lot of hot air? Coaches weigh in

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Sean McDonnell, one of the most successful college football coaches in the country, a man respected for his integrity and honor, wants to know what all the fuss is about. Deflated balls? So? “Let me put it this way,” the University of New Hampshire football coach told me …

Ray Duckler : The passing of a man who changed a campus

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

More than 30 years ago, the rector at St. Paul’s School, a man with sharper vision than a bald eagle, spoke in front of his students and fought back tears. Bill Oates explained why he had expelled a …

Ray Duckler: If you’ve never heard of Jonathan Daniels, read this

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Jonathan Daniels, answering a call from God and Martin Luther King Jr., went to Alabama in the spring of 1965 and died there five months later. He was killed by a shotgun blast from a man named Thomas …