Sometimes people come into our lives and then out without the notice they were due.
I recently had occasion for a quick visit in a wing of Citizens Memorial Healthcare Facility that I haven’t frequented much and I noticed a name on a door, a name of someone I had not seen or talked to in a number of years. I made a mental note to stop back for a visit on a future trip when I wouldn’t be in such a rush.
Then I noticed the same name among the death notices in the Herald-Free Press Wednesday. So much for good intentions.
Regina Elaine Blum died at CMHCF Sunday. She was 92. For some number of years, she was the business face of the Bolivar Area Chamber of Commerce, employed as the part-time manager. She was the first face some visitors to Bolivar would see or the first voice they would hear over the phone.
A quick check of the online archives of the paper turns up a letter to the editor she wrote 11 years ago, commenting about the closing of Bolivar’s only full-service gas station at the time. She noted a willingness to pay more for gas where an attendant would fill her tank, check her oil and put air in her tires as needed.
Also popping up was at least one of the years she worked with the chamber, in a Remember When article noting Gretchen Pulley’s election as president of the chamber in 1987. And there was a land transfer reference in 2015.
I recall that she and her husband, who died long before her, were involved in a local business together, but I would be guessing if I tested my memory for those details.
Minimal information was provided in the death notice in either the paper or the funeral home website. Private services will be sometime in the future.
As one whose path crossed hers through the chamber, I felt I owed her a visit that didn’t happen and something more to mark her time here and her passing.
• • •
William Patterson, a reader from Texas, reached out in a couple of emails and took note of a person who once touched his life who also didn’t get attention he thought due her in recent coverage of the sale of the Dunnegan home and belongings.
William was valedictorian of his 1949 Bolivar High School class and remembers a short letter of congratulatons for that honor from Olive Dunnegan, who also resided in the Dunnegan home with her brothers T.H.B and John. She invited him in that letter to come for a visit that regretfully never happened.
As he put it, “Typical of young teenagers, I ignored the note in my haste to leave for work in the Kansas wheat fields to earn tuition money.”
Olive died eight years later, in 1957.
• • •
On a weekend in which we are to remember those who came and served before us, who among us can’t remember times when we didn’t do as we would later realize we should have done in a living moment.
Dave Berry is the former BH-FP editor and publisher and now carries the fancy has-been label of “emeritus.” Please direct any complaints or other direct communication with him to firstname.lastname@example.org. As always, the people who actually work here deserve to not be bothered by any of his weekly and weakly distractions or disruptions.