A Sole Endeavor: Brisson Launches Reflexology Practice in Chelsea

A Sole Endeavor: Brisson Launches Reflexology Practice in Chelsea

Shannon Brisson in her Reflexology studio.

Shannon Brisson in her Reflexology studio.

Shannon Brisson is standing tall as the only certified reflexologist in the city.

Last June Brisson became the owner and practitioner of Sole Endeavor Reflexology, a private practice with focus on the feet located at a cozy space inside Admiral’s Hill Office Suites, 285 Commandant’s Way.

Brisson defines Reflexology as “a gentle, relaxing bodywork modality which is appropriate for all populations, regardless of age or where one may fall on the wellness spectrum.”

“It is based upon the premise that the entire body is reflected on the feet, hands and ears and that there are specific areas that correspond to glands, organs and body systems,” said Brisson. “And it is through the application of very specific thumb and finger techniques that induces a state of deep relaxation with acute awareness- much like twilight sleep or meditation.”

Brisson brings an impressive resume to her practice.  As a Certified Reflexologist, she completed 320 hours of study in Reflexology with additional specialized training to work with clients diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress and cancer. She originally trained as a massage therapist through which she completed an in-depth study of anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, and pathology.

She is a member of the Association of Bodywork and Massage Professionals (ABMP) and the Massachusetts Association of Reflexology (MAR).

There is considerable documentation about the toll that stress takes on people. Brisson said that Reflexology, along with other modalities such as yoga, meditation, and acupuncture, have been documented to assist in lowering the stress hormone cortisol.

Brisson and her husband, Dan, have lived in Chelsea for a dozen years. They have two children, Ginger, 7, and Desmond, 5.

“Chelsea was my first choice for a practice location,” said Brisson. “I’m delighted to be in the Admiral’s Hill Office Suites. They have been so accommodating and welcoming.”

Brisson hopes that her practice will be one of many mind-body practices in Chelsea and that she can be a part of building a wellness community.

“Many Chelsea residents are going in to Boston and other communities to get services that Chelsea could create here,” said Brisson.

In addition to her private practice, Brisson is partnering with practitioners in other modalities to provide regular pop-up holistic clinics featuring services such as community acupuncture, yoga, and Reiki. These donation-based clinics are designed to introduce these modalities to the public while also bringing awareness and support to organizations such as There and Back Again, Lucy’s Love Bus, Crossroads Family Shelter, and Zumix.

Brisson said the initial response to her practice has been gratifying.

“It’s been a wonderful launch,” said Brisson. “I have had a great response from Chelsea and Admiral’s Hill residents and I’m very encouraged by the reception since I began my practice.”


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Red Devils Top Shawsheen, 53-42

Red Devils Top Shawsheen, 53-42

The Chelsea High boys basketball team improved to 2-0 in the Large Division of the Commonwealth Athletic Conference with a big 53-42 victory over Shawsheen Tech Tuesday evening at the CHS gym.

After trailing 12-9 at the end of the first period, the Red Devils asserted control of the contest in the middle quarters, moving out to a 25-17 lead at the intermission and lengthening it to a gaping 48-26 bulge after three. Doing a little math reveals that Chelsea outscored their guests by a wide 39-14 tally in the second and third stanzas.

Although Shawsheen closed the gap somewhat over the final eight minutes, the Red Devil lead never dropped below nine.

Oscar Sabillon led Chelsea in the point-scoring column with 19 points. Eric Flores also reached double figures with 12 points, including some three pointers down the stretch that thwarted Shawsheen’s dreams of a comeback bid.

Kevin Almeida hit for seven points, followed by Jorge Ramos with five, Eric Fernandez with four, and Guillermo Zelata, Albert Alicea, and Victor Corrales with two apiece.

“Shawsheen had a couple of players who were much taller than any of our guys, but we utilized our speed and quickness to beat them downcourt,” said CHS head coach Jay Seigal, who gave a shout-out to Alicea for his hard-nosed defensive effort. “We played with a lot of energy and hustle after a slow start and that proved to be the difference.”

The Red Devils had been scheduled to play Lynn Tech last Friday, but that contest was snowed out.

Chelsea, which now stands at 2-3 on the season, will host arch-rival Revere tonight (Thursday) in a contest that brings with it bragging rights in the Seigal household inasmuch as coach Jay Seigal’s son, Jason, plays for Revere. Incidentally, Jason Seigal scored 30 points for his Patriot team in a recent winning effort over Winchester. Tip-off time for the Revere tilt is 7:00.

The Red Devils will travel to Whittier tomorrow and host Northeast Vocational School Tuesday.


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Good Luck, Gene

Good Luck, Gene

Chelsea has always been fortunate to have some great Representatives in the General Court of Massachusetts.  For more than 20 years until 1996, Chelsea voters had Richie Voke representing them at the House Chamber.  Richie was a master of bringing home the grants for Chelsea.

But as in life, Richie decided not to seek re-election in 1996 and in stepped Gene O’Flaherty, a relatively unknown and untried office holder.  With the help of his family and especially his father John, Gene won the primary and election.

Gene learned the House rules quickly and just as quickly started to distinguish himself at the  State House.  Gene rose just as quickly through the ranks and became Chairman of the Joint Committee on the Judiciary a position that he has held for more than a decade.

Gene has become a fixture in Chelsea attending the many public events where he met the residents and learned their concerns that he brought back to the State House.

Gene’s respect from his colleagues is clearly seen when he was tapped by newly elected Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, a State Representative from Dorchester, to have Gene lead the important Corporation Counsel for the City of Boston.

Chelsea will be losing a lot of clout when Gene steps down.  For more than 18 years, he has brought many of the state grants back to Chelsea that has help transform out City.

We wish Gene and his wife Tricia much success in the years to come.


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A Look Back at the Highs and Lows of 2013: There Have Been Many Cheers and a Few Tears in Chelsea This past Year

A Look Back at the Highs and Lows of 2013: There Have Been Many Cheers and a Few Tears in Chelsea This past Year

Movie crews from 'The Equalizer' have been filming steadily for nearly two weeks (in July) in the front of the Chelsea Floor Covering building on Everett Avenue and Chestnut Street. Prior to stars like Denzel Washington arriving, carpenters and painters busied themselves in creating the meticulously-designed cafe called the 'Bridge Coffee Shop - Since 1954.'

Movie crews from ‘The Equalizer’ have been filming steadily
for nearly two weeks (in July) in the front of the Chelsea
Floor Covering building on Everett Avenue and Chestnut
Street. Prior to stars like Denzel Washington arriving,
carpenters and painters busied themselves in creating the
meticulously-designed cafe called the ‘Bridge Coffee Shop -
Since 1954.’


Chelsea was abuzz while two of Hollywood’s biggest were in town to film their latest movies. Downtown, Denzel Washington was in and out of Chelsea Floor Covering, which had been transformed into the Bridge Coffee Shop for his movie: The Equalizer. John Travolta filmed his movie, The Forger, at various locations in Chelsea. The biggest local star sighting may have been on stage in Washington, DC, though, when Amber Rodriguez, a senior at Chelsea High School, accepted a National Arts and Humanities Youth Award from First Lady Michelle Obama.


Big celebrations continued to show civic pride and attract hundreds of locals and out-of-towners. The Chelsea Art Walk and the Taste of Chelsea have become iconic local events, the latter of which attracted Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker. National Nite Out and the Back to School Celebration continued their run of successful community happenings. Chelsea Winter Fest was moved indoors to avoid a storm, but the spirit of the season was felt nonetheless. Most inspiring may have been the All-Chelsea Awards, which featured the stories of 11 people recognized for their substantial contributions to the betterment of Chelsea.


Communities typically cheer a bond rating increase; Chelsea had the unusual, yet welcomed, reason to cheer for two increases this past year. Standard & Poor’s elevated the City rating first to AA- and then to AA on the basis of continuing strong financial and managerial performance. The City also received an award for its audit report from the Government Finance Officers Association of North America. Perhaps the three awards provided the basis for City Manager Jay Ash to receive a performance review of “excellent” from the City Council in December.


Bellingham Square was the center point of an extended undercover operation that culminated this past summer with the arrest of 48 people and a noticeable difference in the look and feel of Chelsea’s hub thereafter. While the police deserve kudos for its work on that operation and many others, the City also unveiled a public health strategy to combat drugs locally. A partnership with MGH has resulted in a community substance abuse manager being hired, who has been coordinating programming to help individuals and families address drugs and to make local neighborhoods and the entire community safer and healthier.


Just hours after topping the ticket in the local municipal election, Councillor Calvin Brown was arrested in a domestic dispute. Police responded and placed the popular local elected official under arrest, in what was described as a “standard procedure” for anyone involved in such a dispute. That case was dismissed with no findings by the court in December. Brown and his colleagues, all of whom were re-elected, are scheduled to be sworn in on Jan. 6th for a new term.


It seemed like every month another State grant was being announced for Chelsea. Projects like park renovations, housing developments and roadway improvements were being trumpeted by Chelsea’s very effective legislative delegation of Sen. Sal DiDomenico and Representatives Eugene O’Flaherty and Kathi-Anne Reinstein and awarded by the Patrick Administration. In addition to Gov. Deval Patrick making several stops in Chelsea, his top secretaries representing economic development and housing, the environment and transportation visited sites and lauded legislators and City Manager Ash for their efforts. The biggest grants were funding for a veterans housing project at the old American Legion Hall on Shurtleff Street, a Greenway to travel along the abandoned rail line behind the Box District, and roadway improvements on Spruce Street supporting the One North of Boston residential development.


Development continued at a record pace in 2013, with approved projects moving Ash’s total project value to an eye-popping $1 billion since he became involved in the City’s economic development agenda. This past year, two more hotels, a TownePlace Suites for Central and Eastern Avenues, and a Holiday Inn for Beech and Carter Streets, were permitted. The Holiday Inn will also feature a full function hall, which will give local organizations and people the opportunity to once again celebrate major community events in the community. Perhaps the most anticipated project, the FBI regional headquarters, got the go-ahead from the City’s land use boards to be built on the site of a former junkyard and blighted industrial buildings on Everett Avenue. The start of all of those projects are pending, while the 230-unit, market-rate, rental housing development, One North of Boston, broke and has risen from the ground on Sixth Street.


Chelsea’s School Department passed numerous tests with flying colors. Chelsea High School’s two top students matriculated to Yale and Harvard Universities; several teachers won awards including the Yale Teacher of the Year Award, and the entire school system was recognized as the AP School System of the Year by the prestigious College Board. With the enrollment in Chelsea’s well-recognized schools continuing to increase, initial plans to renovate or build a new Clark Avenue Middle School were approved by the State. Once a final design is completed and approved, that potentially $50 million project could cost the local budget as much as $15-$20 million.


Crime continued to dominate local news this past year. Although major crime is down a reported 25 percent for the year, five homicides did occur. Police have arrests in four of those murders, and are pursuing leads on the fifth. In order to continue to push crime rates down, City Manager Ash, City Council President Dan Cortell and Police Chief Brian Kyes have advanced a 10-point plan, which, if approved by the Council, could add another $1 million in spending and increase the already largest police force in the city’s history by five more officers. Among the initiatives Kyes credits with driving the crime rate down is a new unit of five undercover officers who work nights and interrupt violence and other mayhem before it can happen.  Ash also cited the Safe and Successful Youth Initiative, a State-sponsored program with local matching funds that is administered with Roca to intervene in the lives of young men, ages 17-24, who have a history of violence in their past.


Among the hundreds who passed away in 2013, several who served the City were mourned by the entire community. Two public safety officials, Deputy Fire Chief Charles Crowley and Chelsea Police Officer John Gravallese, and a long-time school employee and Chelsea Record columnist, Arnie Goodman, all died from illnesses. Former School Committeewoman Lydia Walata passed, as did her husband and long-time funeral director, Walter Walata, a week later. Former City Councillor Marie Jeffrey also died. Two of the biggest funerals in recent times took place this past year as well, both involving All-Chelsea Awards Lifetime Achievement awardees. Former School Committeeman Morrie Segal, who served the Chelsea Schools in that capacity and as a teacher and administrator and was a veteran of World War II, had his life celebrated at a ceremony at Temple Emanuel. Former School Committeeman and Alderman Richard Clayman, who was perhaps the city’s most celebrated attorney, was also memorialized at Temple Emanuel, although hundreds of well-wishers were unable to get into the standing room only tribute to him inside the city’s largest temple.


City advocates and officials scored what was thought to be an impossibility: stopping scores of train cars loaded with millions of gallons of Ethanol from rolling through the city weekly, and potentially causing a major disaster. The proponent, Global Oil, had planned to transport Ethanol by train through dozens of Massachusetts communities via the commuter rail tracks to its Revere facility. A grassroots coalition, led by the Chelsea Green Space Committee and local environmental justice champion, Roseann Bongiovanni, successfully joined forces with City Manager Ash, Chelsea’s legislative delegation and others across the state to force Global to withdraw its proposal.


The case that thrust national attention on housing authorities and pay levels of those heading them concluded with former Chelsea Housing Authority Executive Director Michael McLaughlin being sentenced to three-years in prison. The disgraced McLaughlin plead guilty to four felonies for underreporting income that he had manipulated to grow to $360,000 annually. Judge Douglas Woodlock, in light of McLaughlin’s egregious actions, increased the sentence above the 18-months prosecutors had recommended. McLaughlin’s legal woes continued as he was indicted for campaign fundraising violations, a case that is still pending, and also for allegedly fixing apartment inspections with former federal housing officials.


Gov. Patrick informed a crowd of more than 200 in the packed lobby of the Central Avenue Garage that the MBTA’s Silver Line would be coming to Chelsea. The Silver Line Gateway will feature articulated buses and connect four stops in Chelsea with the Airport Station on the Blue Line, and several stops in Boston’s Seaport District, including South Station. The Silver Line Gateway is going through design, prior to the start of construction. The service will begin in late 2016, and will also cause the relocation of the current commuter rail service to the Mystic Mall, where the Silver Line will terminate. When both operate there, Chelsea will be the only community outside of Boston to have direct public transportation service to both South and North Station. Patrick was joined by Sen. DiDomenico, Reps. O’Flaherty and Reinstein, and City Manager Ash for the announcement. Ash, who had been working on a version of the Silver Line for 17 years, called the $80 million project a “game-changer” for Chelsea.


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Obituaries 01-02-2014

Obituaries 01-02-2014

Edward Nadolny

Of Chelsea, formerly of Everett

Edward P. Nadolny of Chelsea, formerly of Everett, died on December 25. A US Army veteran of the Korean Conflict, he was the beloved husband of the late Rose (Salamone); dear and devoted father of Daniel Nadolny and Rose Paradiso and her life partner, George Steuber of Everett; brother of the late Charles and Alex Nadolny and Helen Carberry; loving grandfather of Stephanie and Samuel Paradiso, III and great-grandfather of three great-grandchildren. Also surviving is his sister-in-law, Mary Nadolny of Everett. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend Edward’s visiting hours in the Cafasso & Sons Funeral Home, 65 Clark St. (Corner of Main St.) Everett, Tuesday morning, Dec. 31 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. followed by his Funeral Mass in the Immaculate Conception Church, 487 Broadway, Everett, at 11 a.m. Interment will be in Holy Cross Cemetery, Malden. Contributions in Edward’s memory to St. Michael the Archangel Chapel, 91 Crest Ave., Chelsea, MA 02150, would be sincerely appreciated.


Mildred Berry

Retired Chelsea Soldiers’ Home Nurse and Mentor to Many

Mildred A. (Garmalinsky) Berry, a longtime resident of Chelsea and Everett, died on December 22 at her Everett residence under the loving care of her family following a prolonged illness. Born and raised in Willimantic, Connecticut, the family moved to Chelsea before moving to Everett 37 years ago. “Millie” was a graduate of both the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home School of Nursing and the Mass Bay College of Nursing. For more than 32 years, she nursed at the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home where she earned an outstanding reputation as a most caring and devoted nurse, not only to her patients but to their families as well. Families would often request that she be assigned to their loved one’s care. Millie enjoyed the role of “mentor” to many nursing students often resulting in continued life-long relationships. She was the wife of the late George R. Berry, Sr., who died in December of 2003; the devoted mother of Millie Berry, RN and George R. Berry, Jr. both of Everett, William L. Berry and his late wife, Maryalice of Uxbridge and the late Stephen J. Berry, who died in June of 1974. She also leaves her dear twin sister, Lee Woodworth of Willimantic, CT and she is also lovingly survived by her surrogate grandson, Andrew Forget of Uxbridge and her faithful friends, Nancy Hocter of Middleton, Lucy Hunter and Nino Mittolo, both of Revere, and by many nieces and nephews. Funeral arrangements were entrusted to the Vertuccio & Smith Home for Funerals, Revere. Interment was in the family lot at Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to St. Jude Childrens Research Hospital, P.O. Box 1800, Dept. 142, Memphis, TN, 38101-9908. For additional information, visit: www.vertuccioandsmith.com


Robert Anderson

Avid Sports Fan of Ayer, formerly of Chelsea

Robert C. Anderson of Ayer, formerly of Chelsea and Malden, passed away at the Apple Valley Center in Ayer on December 21. He was 63 years old.

Born in Chelsea, he lived here until his marriage and has lived in Ayer since 1999. Bob worked for the City of Malden maintenance dept. for 10 years leaving there to work in the same capacity for the City of Somerville for 20 years until his retirement. A member of the Malden VFW and American Legion, in his spare time he was an avid sports fan who took pride in knowing all statistical information of all teams.

He was the devoted husband of 32 years of Jacqueline (Crannell) Anderson; beloved brother of Marilyn Klimarchark of Chelsea, Mary Nadworny of Tyngsboro, Patricia Beffre of NH and the late Margie Laidlaw, Kenneth Anderson and Claire Spencer and is also lovingly survived by his beloved cat K.C., many nieces and nephews and his best friend, Nick Carbone.

Funeral arrangements were by the Carroll Funeral Home, Malden. Committal was private. Expressions of sympathy in Bob’s name may be made to St. Jude Children’s Reserach Hospital, P.O. Box 1893, Memphis, TN 38101-9950.

To send a message of condolence to Roberts family, please visitwww.smithfuneralhomes.com


Robert Orcione

Carpenter’s Union Member,

Past President of the 5-2 Club in Chelsea

Robert Orcione, a lifelong resident of Everett, died at home on December 12. He was 63 years old. Born in Everett, he was a US Army veteran of the Vietnam Era, a member and past president of the 5-2 Club in Chelsea and the Carpenter’s Union, Local 218. He was the beloved husband of 38 years of Karla R. (Lucas) Orcione; loving son of the late Americo and Marion (Whitmore) Orcione; dear and devoted father of Keith R. Orcione and his fiance, Jewel Hoeun of Saugus, Janel M. Orcione of Everett and Justin A. Orcione and his wife, Jillian of Malden; brother of Nancy Vitukevich of Everett and Linda Greeley and her husband, Michael of Chelsea; loving grandfather of Ayuka Yazawa, Charlize Hoeun, Rocco Orcione, Isabelle Orcione and Bianca Orcione; brother-in-law of Donna and John Butler of Stoneham, Gail and Greg Hoskins of Florida, William and Lisa Lucas of Wakefield, April Akley of Malden and the late Eric and Steven Lucas. He is also survived by several nieces and nephews. Funeral arrangements were entrusted to the Cafasso & Sons Funeral Home, Everett. Interment with military honors was in the Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett.


Carole Ann Beaulieu

Worked for Chelsea City Retirement Board and Formerly for Our Lady of the Assumption Parish

Carole Ann (Levy) Beaulieu, a lifelong Chelsea resident, passed away early Christmas morning at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston after a suffering a debilitating stroke three days earlier. Born and raised in Chelsea, she was the daughter of the late William A. and Margaret W. (Cox) Levy. She attended local schools and was a graduate of Chelsea High School, Class of 1960. She married Arthur Beaulieu and together they raised their two daughters in Chelsea. A devoted housewife and mother, Carole also worked outside of her home for many years in Chelsea City Hall for the City Retirement Board as a Financial Administrator. She retired in 2002 after 15 years of service. Earlier, she worked for 14 years in the Rectory Office for Our Lady of the Assumption Parish as their Financial Clerk. Carole, who was a six year Breast Cancer survivor, enjoyed traveling with her husband, they enjoyed many weekend getaways together. She was the beloved wife of 47 years to Arthur Beaulieu; devoted mother of Michelle Griffith of Hudson, NH and Susan Kilgallen and her husband, William of Brighton; cherished grandmother of Ginelle Testa, Derek and Cassidy Griffith and Liam and Aidan Kilgallen; dear sister of Margaret Petrosino of Revere, Donna DiPrima of Merrimac, NH and the late William Levy. Funeral Services were held last Saturday and were led by Rev. Vincent Gianni. Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to the Breast Care Center c/o BIDMC, 330 Brookline Ave., Boston, MA 02215. For a link for donations or to send a sympathy card, please visit www.WelshFuneralHome.com


Richard Campagna

Boston Parks Department Retiree

Richard Campagna formerly of East Boston, passed away on December 22 at the Chelsea Soldiers Home where he has lived for the past few years.

Born and raised in East Boston, he was the son of the late Napoleon and Edith Campagna. He attended schools in East Boston, graduated from East Boston High School. He enlisted in the US Army in 1946 and was honorably discharged following World War II. Richard worked for many years for the Boston Parks Department in East Boston retiring after many years of faithful and dedicated service.

He is survived by his niece, Judith Russell of Florida.

A Funeral Mass was celebrated in St. Michael the Archangel Chapel. Services concluded with Military Honors. T Funeral Arrangements entrusted to the care and direction of the Anthony Memorial / Frank A. Welsh and Sons Funeral Home, Chelsea. To send expressions of sympathy, please visit www.WelshFuneralHome.com.


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Red Devils Drop Pair; Host Lynn Tech Friday

Red Devils Drop Pair; Host Lynn Tech Friday

The Chelsea High boys basketball team found the Beverly Holiday Tournament anything but merry, as the Red Devils dropped both of their games in the tourney this past weekend.

Chelsea drew the host team in the tourney opener Friday night and came out on the short end of a 54-39 decision. The initial period was a defensive battle, with Beverly taking a 9-6 advantage at the first horn, but Chelsea fought back to take a 15-14 edge midway through the second frame. However, that would prove to be the apogee of the Red Devils’ effort on the evening. Beverly ran off 11 unanswered points to close out the half for a 25-15 lead at the intermission.

Chelsea fell behind by 14, 39-25 after three quarters, but managed to cut the gap to single digits in the final period. However, the Red Devils were unable to get over the hump despite their best attempts.

“Overall, we played well and I was pleased with the team’s hustle and intensity,” said CHS head coach Jay Seigal. “But Beverly is a strong and veteran club and once we fell behind, it was hard to get back into the game.”

Oscar Sabillon led the Red Devils with 13 points. Eric Flores was next on the point parade with seven, followed by Kevin Almeida and Jorge Ramos with six each, Eric Fernandez with four, Nelson Vega with two, and Victor Corrales with a free throw.

Seigal was not as pleased with his team’s performance the following evening against Bishop Fenwick in the tourney consolation contest. The Red Devils came out flat and never displayed the same level of determination that they had evidenced against Beverly.

“Fenwick was a team we probably should have beaten,” said Seigal. “But we never got into a flow. We seemed to be standing around. Our heads just weren’t in the game.”

Chelsea fell behind early, and though the gap remained in the range of 5-7 points throughout the game, the Red Devils never managed to make a breakthrough en route to a 55-44 defeat.

Flores paced Chelsea in the scoring department with 14 points and Sabillon reached double figures with 11. Corrales added seven, Almeida hit for six, and Guillermo Zelata, Eric Martinez, Albert Alicea, and Fernandez all contributed a bucket apiece.

The Red Devils, who now stand at 1-3 on the season, have a succession of three home games of which two will be against Commonwealth Conference opponents, starting with Lynn Tech this Friday for a 5:15 tip-off. Chelsea then will host Shawsheen Tech Tuesday at 7:00 and entertain former Greater Boston League foe Revere next Thursday at 7:00.


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Ring out the Old…. We Wish Our Readers a Happy and Healthy 2014

Ring out the Old…. We Wish Our Readers a Happy and Healthy 2014

New Year’s Day really isn’t different than any other day of the year.  It is a day that has no real significance other than its place on the calendar. However, that lack of meaningfulness also is New Year’s greatest asset.  New Year’s Day belongs to everyone because it has no particular religious or political meaning to anyone.   It is the one and only day of the year on which the entire world joins together to celebrate as the clock strikes 12:00 in all 24 times zones.

On the other hand, New Year’s Day somehow does feel different, and that particularly is true the older we get.  We have an innate sense that another year inexorably has come and gone  and that our own lives are passing by as surely as the Earth spins on its axis.

If there is any day of the year that gives us pause to reflect, it is New Year’s Day. We recall with sadness those who have left us in the year that now belongs to the past, but we rejoice in those who have joined us. We are a year older — but are we any wiser? Did we keep any of those New Year’s resolutions that we made 365 days ago, or have we regressed?

Individually and collectively, we faced many challenges in 2013. But while we all hope that the coming year will be better, that hope is tempered by the reality that it is part of the human condition that sorrow and suffering inevitably will occur in the year to come.  We can pray that 2014 will be good to us, but none of us has a crystal ball to predict what the New Year will bring.

We have reprinted below Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “Ring Out Wild Bells.” Tennyson’s poem was written in 1850, but like all works of art, its message is timeless and it sums up the hope and meaning  of the New Year much better than we ever could.

We wish all of our readers a Happy and Healthy 2014.

Ring Out Wild Bells

By Alfred Lord Tennyson

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,

The flying cloud, the frosty light;

The year is dying in the night;

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

Ring, happy bells, across the snow:

The year is going, let him go;

Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,

For those that here we see no more,

Ring out the feud of rich and poor,

Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,

And ancient forms of party strife;

Ring in the nobler modes of life,

With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,

The faithless coldness of the times;

Ring out, ring out thy mournful rhymes,

But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,

The civic slander and the spite;

Ring in the love of truth and right,

Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease,

Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;

Ring out the thousand wars of old,

Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,

The larger heart, the kindlier hand;

Ring out the darkness of the land,

Ring in the Christ that is to be.


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Brown’s Case Dismissed Just Before Christmas Despite DA’s Comments

Brown’s Case Dismissed Just Before Christmas Despite DA’s Comments

City Councillor Calvin Brown had domestic violence charges dismissed on the Friday before Christmas using a legal technique frowned upon by the Office of District Attorney Dan Conley.

On Friday, Dec. 20, Chelsea District Court Judge Dunbar Livingston dismissed the case due to the fact that the victim – and only witness, who was Brown’s wife – refused to testify.

Brown’s wife, in a filing with the court, asserted her marital privilege in not testifying against her husband. That left no testimony, and, virtually no case.

So, it was dismissed.

A call to Brown’s attorney, John Lee Diaz, was not returned.

The DA’s office said it was in the process of assigning Brown’s case to a prosecutor from outside the county – so as to remove any conflict of interest based on the fact that Brown is an elected official. However, the DA’s office said that while in the process of doing that, a member of the Chelsea Court staff objected to that disposition for the purpose of the record. So, it was handled in-house.

At the same time, Brown’s attorney filed what is known as a ‘accord and satisfaction,’ which many prosecutors and the DA’s office frowns upon allowing in domestic cases. An ‘accord and satisfaction’ is a legal technique used between two parties prior to a criminal hearing saying that both have been satisfied with a private agreement outside of court – thus allowing a judge to dismiss the charges.

“Generally speaking, we don’t believe an ‘accord and satisfaction’ is appropriate in cases of domestic violence because it can put undue pressure to accept that disposition on a victim who is financially or otherwise dependent on the offender: We objected to it in the 2006 case of baseball player Brett Myers, and we filed legislation earlier this year that would have prohibited judges from granting it in domestic violence cases such as this one. Unfortunately, the Legislature chose not to act on it,” said Jake Wark of the DA’s Office.

In 2006, the Commonwealth tried to challenge the Constitutionality of the procedure in domestic violence cases with the Supreme Judicial Court. However, the SJC did not agree with the Commonwealth and continued to allow it.

“We understand the Commonwealth’s concern that in cases like this one, where the assault and battery occurs in the context of domestic violence, that the abuser may be able to intimidate the partner or spouse into signing an accord and satisfaction,” read the 2006 decision written by Justice Roderick Ireland. “However, the seriousness of that concern does not affect whether the statute itself is Constitutional.”

Brown is expected to be sworn in to his new City Council term on Jan. 6.


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Metro Credit Union Donates to Haven from Hunger

Metro Credit Union Donates to Haven from Hunger

Vanessa Silveira, (right) Metro Credit Union's Peabody branch manager hold the donation check with Alyse Barbash, Director at Haven From Hunger.

Vanessa Silveira, (right) Metro Credit Union’s Peabody
branch manager hold the donation check with Alyse Barbash,
Director at Haven From Hunger.

Metro Credit Union, the Commonwealth’s largest state-chartered credit union, donated $1000 to Haven From Hunger, a local non-profit committed to feeding people in the Peabody, Lynnfield and Salem communities.

“We are so glad to be able to donate to Haven From Hunger at such a critical time, just days before Christmas. We have worked with this organization in the past and truly appreciate what they do in our communities in the fight against hunger,” explains Charlene Bauer, SVP of Community and Business Development at Metro Credit Union.

Alyse Barbash, Director at Haven From Hunger, says “We are so thankful that Metro Credit Union was able to provide us with this timely donation. Haven From Hunger is happy to have another neighbor in the community committed to providing food for the less fortunate.”

The money donated to Haven From Hunger will feed 40 families a full Christmas dinner.

About Metro Credit Union

Metro Credit Union is the largest state-chartered credit union in Massachusetts with over $1.2 billion in assets, and serves more than 150,000 members. It is a growing, federally insured financial institution and a leading provider of a full range of financial services to anyone living or working in Essex, Middlesex, Suffolk, Norfolk, Plymouth, Barnstable or Worcester counties in Eastern Massachusetts, as well as Massachusetts state employees and retirees throughout the Commonwealth.

Founded in 1926, Metro CU is a non-profit cooperative institution, owned by and operated for the people who use and benefit from its products and services. Metro CU uses superior customer service and technology to deliver a full range of financial products to consumers and businesses in eastern Massachusetts. Metro CU is well known for providing members with unlimited refunds of other banks’ ATM fees through its My Reward Checking account.

Metro CU has 14 branch offices conveniently located in Boston, Burlington, Chelsea, Framingham, Lawrence, Lynn, Melrose, Peabody, Salem, and Tewksbury, and is also a leader in workplace banking, serving over 1,800 companies throughout the state. Learn more about Metro Credit Union at www.metrocu.org.

About Haven From Hunger

Haven from Hunger has been a symbol of hope and compassion in the Peabody, Salem and Lynnfield townships since 1982. Housed in the basement of the Masonic Temple, the soup kitchen and food pantry serves well over 100 people every day.

The Haven from Hunger recognizes the vital importance of providing basic nourishment to those who are hungry — much more is needed. Together with the solidarity and commitment of our staff and volunteers, the Haven strives to be a gateway to positive change in the lives of the people it serves and seeks to enlarge our guests’ capacity for self-help and reconnect them to the broader community. Through our programs and in our commitment to combating hunger and homelessness, we provide the support and respect guests need to become self-sufficient and regain hope for the future. The Haven is a place of humanity, compassion, and dignity.


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