On This Date:
Ten years ago:
This was the last issue before Paul Glendon took over and upgraded the format and graphics, including the masthead that ran for almost ten years. This issue reported the results of the election for Supervisors: in Peaine, Joan Petrak outpolled Dick Burris, and in St. James Neal Boyle beat both Liz Clapham and Edward Palmer, who were tied three votes back. At the County level, Rich Gillespie outpolled incumbent Walt Hufford for a seat on the County Commission, based on Rich's opposition to hiring a county administrator.
Two accidents of note were reported. In the first, a man fell off his sailboat 9 miles out of Charlevoix. His wife turned into the wind, dropped the main sail, switched on the engine, circled back, and threw him a life sling, but he had hit his head and was too exhausted and chilled to climb back in the boat. Luckily Kevin McDonough spotted the problem from the Beaver Islander and pulled alongside. Crew member Tom Burzyck and passenger Lee Cobb dove into the water and got the man back in his boat, and then administered first aid and brought the sailboat into St. James Harbor.
In the second, a 1959 Cessna 179-A crash-landed on Gull Island (12 miles west of Beaver) on August 16th after the engine failed. The pilot, Richard Stone, and his passenger were shaken up and taken to Traverse City by the Coast Guard helicopter. "He would've done all right but he hit a log on the beach and damaged the nose gear," Paul Welke said. Paul was one of the first to respond to Stone's mayday, arriving about a minute after the plane went down. Two Cessna 172s that dropped from the skies of northern Michigan in the preceding month did not fare as well.
Forty Years Ago:
Burdene Stromberg was the editor, and the Beacon was produced on a Gestetener mimeo machine. Circulation passed two hundred.
The featured story was about the overdue arrival of the new ferry, the Beaver Islander, on July 27th. After a prayer by Father Wren and a rendition of the Star Spangled Banner by Mrs. Paul Heflin, she was christened on August 5th by petite Mrs. Mary McDonough, mother of the captain (Lawrence.) "She handed her purse and her bouquet of roses to her son, took a good look at the bow of the boat, and gave a hefty swing with the bottle of champagne. The bottle broke, but most of the champagne landed on Captain Forrest Pratt, who was standing nearby." Following the ceremony, 80 people got on board for an initiation run to Charlevoix for a celebratory dinner. Many were allowed to take a turn at the wheel.
The tragic death of fisherman Matt Jensen was also reported. Born on Garden Island, he had moved to Beaver, and the sight of his boat, the Captain Edward, coming into the harbor loaded with whitefish was a highly-anticipated event. On July 28th he left Beaver, and was reported the next day. On the 30th the Captain Edward was found beached near Manistique, and his body was in the surf not far away. An autopsy revealed the cause of death to be a heart attack.
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