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Clearwater couple celebrates 60 years of marriage

Good for you | by Nova Beall

John and Dolores Bernard of Clearwater celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a renewal of their vows and a surprise dinner party with family at the Sandpearl Resort, Clearwater Beach.

The couple married Jan. 26, 1952, in Coatesville, Pa.

He was employed as an engineer at Lukens Steel Co., Coatesville.

She is a homemaker.

The Coatesville natives lived in Newark, Del., and Lancaster, Pa., before coming to Clearwater in 1977.

The Bernards are members of Heritage United Methodist Church, Clearwater.

They have two children, four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

• • •

Eagle Scout Andrew James Case of Troop 26 in Palm Harbor was selected as the winner of the 2011 Eagle Scout scholarship contest presented by the Florida Society, Sons of the American Revolution, Clearwater Chapter, for which he received an engraved SAR Eagle Scout Scholarship Medal and $100. He also placed third at the state level of the FLSSAR Eagle Scout scholarship contest and received a congratulatory letter from Charlie Day, the state chairman of the SAR Eagle Scout Scholarship and Recognition program, as well as $250 from the FLSSAR and $100 from the FLSSAR Ladies Auxiliary.

Case's winning entry included an essay, "The Battle of Cowpens," which occurred in South Carolina during the Revolutionary War, in which his patriot ancestor, James Abrams, participated.

The Palm Harbor University High junior is the son of Richard and Pamela Case.

• • •

This January, as part of National Mentoring Month, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Pinellas County honored the volunteers, donors, parents and staff members who work together to provide careful mentor matching and support services for children who face adversity.

Big Brothers Big Sisters is a lead partner in National Mentoring Month, which is spearheaded by the Harvard Mentoring Project of the Harvard School of Public Health, MENTOR/National Mentoring Partnership, and the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Four Bigs from Pinellas County were selected for their significant impact, including community-based Big Sister of the Year Leona Hamrick of Dunedin.

Hamrick works as a position assistant at Primary Care Associates. She and Little Sister Amanda have been matched since April 2002.

Ten years ago, Hamrick was new to the area and looking to get involved with a cause that benefited youth.

"I used to be a high school coach and missed being involved with community activities and influencing youth," she said. "Big Brothers Big Sisters allows me to be active within my community. It is a perfect fit for me. I really enjoy being able to influence my Little Sister in a positive way."

When they first met, Amanda was in elementary school. Throughout several turbulent teenage years, Big Sister Leona was there to help her make positive choices.

With guidance from Hamrick, Amanda enrolled in online classes, graduated from high school early, and is now on her way to earning a college degree.

Over the years, Hamrick helped Amanda with school work, finding employment, applying to college and she occasionally drove her to class. Through it all, the two have been there for each other.

"It's been amazing to witness Amanda grow from a shy girl into a beautiful, confident and secure college woman," said Hamrick, who admitted there would have been an empty place in her heart had she never been matched with her Little Sister.

• • •

The Dunedin Fire Department selected Firefighter/Driver Engineer Mike Lowry as the 2011 City of Dunedin Fire Fighter of the Year.

The award was presented by Dunedin Mayor Dave Eggers and Deputy Fire Chief Jeff Parks at the regular Dunedin City Commission meeting Jan. 19 at Dunedin City Hall.

Lowry has displayed a consistent upbeat attitude and maintained an exceptional work ethic since signing on with the Dunedin Fire Department in 1999, according to a department news release. He serves as a preceptor for younger paramedics and is always ready to help others.

"Because of his fearless courage and positive outlook, Mike has been an inspiration to his crew," said District Fire Chief Robert Krayer, Lowry's shift supervisor. "He is an example of a dedicated firefighter who goes beyond the call of duty to make our department the finest it can be."

Clearwater couple celebrates 60 years of marriage 02/01/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 1, 2012 6:40pm]
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