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Today's Features

  • Note: I would like to express again my appreciation to Wendy Noble, younger sister of Spitfire pilots Jerry and Rod Smith, who has provided advice and copies of her trove of documents concerning her brothers’ lives. In doing so I would like to quote from The Spitfire Smiths by Rod Smith, with Christopher Shores. In his Introduction, Shores writes: “Throughout I have been greatly assisted by Wendy Noble without whose efforts I certainly could not have completed this account...”

  • “We are literally heartbroken,” said J.P. Seppenfield. “He was only seven years old, and he got lymphoma. The vet looked at us, and said, ‘If you were a billionaire, you couldn’t save him.’”

    Seppenfield, his wife Frieda, daughter Morgan and son Jonathan couldn’t save Woodford, their cherished Australian Shepherd, so they set out to make his last week of life as comfortable as they could. They wanted desperately to give him back just a small fraction of the joy he had brought into their lives.

  • Surrounded by tender, flaky fish frying to perfection, golden brown hush puppies piling up in baskets and a bevy of delectable desserts awaiting hordes of diners, Kent Herold scurried all around the Church of the Annunciation’s community center Friday, making sure everything was in order for the first fish fry of the Lenten season.

  • Author’s Note: This is my 200th column in a series “History Researched and Recalled,” published in The Sentinel-News since 2007.

    [I continue to depart from My Marine Corps Journal temporarily to describe the hazardous missions of a spitfire pilot.]

    Selected entries in Jerry Smith’s Diary:

  • Sculptor Jenny Hager-Vickery is proud of her latest creation.

    At 20 feet tall, Gypsy the Giraffe, a life-sized sculpture she created for the Jacksonville Zoo, is the largest she has ever done.

    “My husband actually worked on it with me as well; it was a daunting task – the largest I had made up to now was fifteen feet tall,” she said. “I call her Gyspy – that's her pet name – I name things with alliteration, so she got a ‘G’ name.”

  • Sculptor Jenny Hager-Vickery is proud of her latest creation.

    At 20 feet tall, Gypsy the Giraffe, a life-sized sculpture she created for the Jacksonville Zoo, is the largest she has ever done.

    “My husband actually worked on it with me as well; it was a daunting task – the largest I had made up to now was fifteen feet tall,” she said. “I call her Gyspy – that's her pet name – I name things with alliteration, so she got a ‘G’ name.”

  • May 3, 1942

    Yesterday, we unmoored and stood down the Clyde, anchoring in Greenock. The weather was perfect and the green hills were very tempting. I went ashore for a few hours in that famous old shipbuilding town, drank a couple of beers, walked miles, and noticed some ruins from last year’s air raids. It’s amazing the difficulty one has in buying whiskey in Scotland. Underway at 0530 this morn.

    May 7, 1942

  • Love was in the air Saturday night, not just for couples at an annual Valentine's Day dance but also for the homeless dogs and cats the event supports.

    "I love it," said Sammy Woodhall. "We've been helping Sandy Hill out at Operation CatSnip – we've been doing some fostering. I thought I loved cats before, but now! This is our first time here, it's just awesome."

    Sammy and Mike Woodhall were among the 320 plus guests at the sold out event, held at Claudia Sanders Dinner House.

  • April 22, 1942

    The Wasp’s second “campaign” is nearly over – the “Battle of the Mediterranean,” the first having been our “conquest” of Martinique. [An attempt at jest]

    The morning of 19th we passed through the Straits of Gibraltar on my mid watch. The lights of Tangier and Ceuta were illuminating the African shore, but the Gibraltar side was blacked out except for navigational lights.

  • As he gave a haircut and a shave to a customer, Robert Marshall talked about how the thriving African American business community on Henry Clay Street has all but disappeared since he opened his barbershop there in 1960.

    “We’re were just discussing that at the Martin Luther King service a few weeks ago, the way it was, compared to how it is now,” he said, expertly using a comb to shape the customer’s new do.