The article read around the world

This past May, I wrote an article for the Observer ("Pen pals for 70 years and counting") about my longtime pen pal, Annette, who lives in England. Since the article was printed, I have been surprised and pleased by the positive response I've received from friends and neighbors and some folks I didn't even know. Guess they recognized me from my picture in the article.

I wanted to share with you how that little article in the Observer took off. I sent two copies to Annette in England. Annette has a brother, Ron, four years her junior who was 9 years old when we began writing. When he was in his 20s he immigrated to Western Australia in the general area of Perth. He would occasionally ask Annette if we were still "at it." So I asked Annette to send Ron the second copy of my article.

Several months ago I was amazed to receive the only letter Ron ever wrote me. Among other things he thanked me for gifts we'd enclosed for him in our boxes to his family after WWII. He mentioned stick chewing gum and the first ballpoint pen he'd ever seen. He said it was maroon. He still remembered after almost 70 years.

The last sentence in his letter said, "Thanks for that Westlake | Bay Village Observer article." Then it dawned on me. My little article had traveled all the way around the world. As the saying goes, "who'da thought"!

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Volume 7, Issue 22, Posted 9:19 AM, 11.17.2015