Down Memory Lane for April 26

Nov. 22, 1990

Alice Pullen’s “kin family” consists of two daughters, five grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

But she reaches out to many others — a large unofficial extended family. She babysits the “great’s,” is generous with her time, helps friends, neighbors, the sick and numerous worthy causes. She does not drive, but she does get around. Her good works are well-known.

Mrs. Pullen attends Flint Hill Methodist and Baptist (Old School) Battle Run Church. She is amember of the Methodist Women’s group, Flint Hill Extension Homemakers Club, the Auxiliary of the Flint Hill Volunteer Fire Company. She helps with the Aileen Company’s annual bloodmobile, as well as the EHC bloodmobile. She is a volunteer at the Senior Nutrition Center, and is an avid gardener.

Monday, Wednesday and Friday (holidays excluded), Mrs. Pullen boards the van for her six-hour stint at the Senior Nutrition Center at Trinity Episcopal Church. She helps serve food, cleans whatever needs cleaning, and is a friend to the “seniors.” If a senior needs a little sewing done, Mrs. Pullen is available. She often takes the garment home. Just little things like buttons and hems are what she does, according to her daughter, Frances.

Mrs. Pullen is faithful at work. She is more thoughtful than love requires. She has helped with the “Quilts for Baby Aids Victims” and joined the church women in making receiving blankets for Third World Babies. She takes food to homes where there is illness, visits the sick, has given at least 500 hours to the Nutrition Center, is a good mother and grandmother, and spends her time making our world a better place.

And now all of these efforts have earned Mrs. Pullen the honor of Extension Homemaker of Year.

Sunday was moving day for the Rappahannock Association for the Arts and the Community, as volunteers began packing up the RAAC office and relocating it from the Gay Street Theatre to the packing house at the corner of Gay and Porter Street.

RAAC’s lease on the Gay Street Theatre expires Nov. 30, and the community arts organization was unable to agree with theatre owner Wendy Weinberg on the terms of a new lease, according to former president and RAAC director Diana Bird.

“RAAC and Mrs. Weinberg have parted amicably and the organization hopes that on particular occasions it will rent the theatre on an ad hoc basis,” she added.

Mrs. Weinberg agreed with Mrs. Bird’s feeling, adding, “It just seems to make sense, both to RAAC and to me. I’m sorry that they are going in one way — but I would hope to get the theatre used even more. If RAAC can use the theatre more often, that is so much the better.”

Jan. 7, 1998

In early December, after more than 30 years, Woodville contract Postmaster Ruth Orange retired, closing the book on one of the oldest post offices in the county.

From September 1802, when founding Postmaster John Turner opened shop, to Orange’s appointment as Acting Postmaster in July 1965, the Woodville Post Office has been in continuous operation. Notices of its closure were recently mailed to local residents.

According to Orange, the Woodville office, which operated under contract with USPS since December 1967, served 40 families via General Delivery and maintained 125 post office boxes. Orange voluntarily terminated the contract due to increasing ill health.

The U.S. Postal Service also notified 335 Castleton area residents of the final formal closing of their local post office. This office, operated out of her home by Martha Cannon, actually shut down in 1992, having served only two families.

Woodville and Castleton are only two of the latest casualties of government and corporate downsizing. The USPS continues to close smaller community post offices, consolidating service in regional offices equipped to handle huge volumes of mail at minimal cost.

Ruth Kiger, site coordinator for the Rappahannock Senior Center, was presented an engraved plaque recognizing her “selfless caring and love for the elders and our community.” It was difficult for Kiger to leave a job she loved, she said on Dec. 29, but she had to move on to a full time position working with community services.

Unfortunately, Rappahannock’s seniors are not entitled to a full-timed coordinator that surrounding counties enjoy, she said.

A dozen smiling seniors warmly said farewell to their friend who had watched out for them for the last four years. “She was the best coordinator we ever had and she ran a tight ship,” said Barbara Gentry. “She was organized, careful with the little money we had and completed the considerable amount of paperwork involved with the job.”