BRISTOL BITS: Genesis HealthCare pays tribute to veterans

Published on Thursday, 17 May 2018 20:48


Genesis HealthCare in Forestville held a tribute to the veterans who are residents there and this took place in the courtyard at the facility on Wednesday. Councilman Dave Mills, who represented the  mayor’s office, read a proclamation by Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu in starting the speaking segment of program.

Darren Hale, a 13-year Army veteran from Seasons Hospice in Middlebury, spoke next and had Appreciate Awards distributed to the veterans in attendance: Harold Austin (Army), Bernard Charette (Army), Victor Demers (Army), Donald Flaherty (Army), Nicholas Galarza (Army), Roland Lamothe (Air Force), Mark Levine (Marine Corps), George McGibbon (Army), Allain Nadeau (Navy), James Norfleet (Army), Walter Smith (Marine Corps), Warren Thortenson (Special Forces, Marine Corps) and Thomas Wisk (Air Force).

Yong Crandall, the administrator of the facility, announced the presence of an American flag, which was raised during the ceremony and will remain stationed as a new addition to the courtyard.

“Celebrating Life”

This was the theme at Genesis HealthCare the day prior, and I was asked to speak at that event as residents and I met in the program room. Helene Wade, program director, had called me a couple of months prior to share a conversation with the residents and I had a good time.

Those taking part in the conversation were Margaret Santore, Debora Jamieson, Diane Lorarro, Catherine Fortier (with whom I bantered back and forth), Cindy Schilling, Karen Martin, Shirley Spinella, Joyce Green, Camille Vallee and Maria Sawczuk. Also in attendance were three veterans, Misters Demers, McGibbon and Charette.

The Sessions coach house

I received a call from Peter Mack, who is rehabbing the coach house at Beleden Gardens on Queen Street. At one time the Sessions’ chauffeur, Deosithe Pensonneault, lived there, and Peter is wondering if there are any family members or others who may have pictures of the inside of the structure to help him bring it back to how it once was.

I’m told that the coach house was built in 1908 and Mr. Pensonneault lived there between 1909 and 1955. The 1942 Bristol directory lists him as the chauffeur of Mrs. M.E. Sessions of 100 Queen Street. If anyone can help out with this, let me know.

Rewind 1983 (35 years ago)

The following was a short piece in the Bristol Press: “Historically, Friday 13 is considered an unlucky day. But you can’t prove it by Claire and Robert Nadeau. Friday Mrs. Nadeau of 45 Hawthorne St. gave birth to a daughter, Patricia, at Bristol Hospital in Room 1413. A coincidence?

Try this one. Two years ago Mrs. Nadeau gave birth to daughter Jennifer on Friday the 13th in Room 1413 in the same bed. It’s a good thing the 13th is only happening once this year.

Did you know?

Paul LaFleur, manager of the Bristol American Legion baseball team, has been with the program for 50 years.

Who were Bristol’s best duckpin bowlers?

Back as far as the 1930s, Bristol was recognized as having some standout duckpin bowlers. Tony Zagryn once held the world single-game mark when he rolled a 236 or something close to that in 1936. Harry Peters was the No. 1 ranked bowler in the country one year in the early 1950s and others came along to leave their marks in the sport. Tony and Harry were tops notoriety-wise, but there are others. Does anyone care to add others to this current two-man list?

Write to Bob Montgomery, c/o The Bristol Press, 188 Main St., Bristol, CT 06010. Call 860-973-1808 or email:

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol, Forestville on Thursday, 17 May 2018 20:48. Updated: Thursday, 17 May 2018 20:51.