New Hampton Sgt to get life saving award

NEW HAMPTON – Sgt. Michael Grier is receiving a life saving award at the annual New Hampshire Police, Fire and EMS Foundation banquet Wednesday for administering CPR to a man in the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division on Jan. 8.

Grier, who was in court for an unrelated matter, saw the man slump in the witness chair and rushed into action.

Unable to detect a heartbeat, Grier asked a court security officer to get the automatic defibrillator kept in the hallways on each floor of the court house. When the AED detected no heartbeat, Grier used the machine to restore the man's heartbeat while Laconia EMS crews were responding.

The man, who happened to be a retired police officer, according to the foundation, was alive and talking when rescue teams took him to the hospital. The man survived.

Chief George Huckins said yesterday that the entire town is proud of Grier and his continued service to the New Hampton community. He said all of his officers will be attending the ceremony and the N.H. State Police have agreed to cover the town while they attend.

– Gail Ober

Wicwas Grange celebrates National Grange Month

By MICHAEL KITCH, LACONIA DAILY SUN

MEREDITH — After to shrinking to little more than a handful of members, the Wicwas Grange now numbers close to 100 and, as the largest Grange in New Hampshire, will host an open house on Saturday, April 23, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., to celebrate National Grange Month.

The National Grange of the Order of the Patrons of Husbandry was established in 1867 as a fraternal organization fostering mutual cooperation to further the economic fortunes and civic interests of rural, farming communities. Its motto is "In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity." Within a decade membership topped 850,000 and by the turn of the century the movement had spawned numerous consumer cooperatives as well as contributed to the regulation of railroads and grain elevators and the introduction of the cooperative service, farm credit system and rural free mail delivery,

The Wicwas Lake Grange was established in 1901. The Grange Hall in Meredith Center was built in 1925 and, after burning to the ground, was rebuilt a year later. Steve Durand, the president of the Wicwas Lake Grange, said that in New Hampshire Granges were instrumental in bringing power and police to rural towns with the formation of both New Hampshire Electric Cooperative and the New Hampshire State Police.

In keeping with the Grange's commitment to "American Values, Hometown Roots," Durand said that the Wicwas Lakes Grange posed the challenge to the businesses, nonprofit organizations and residents of Meredith by contributing the first $250 to the project and pledging to match its donation for the next three years.

Durand said that the open house will begin at 1 p.m. with the presentation of an American flag that has flown over the New Hampshire State House by state Sen. Jeanie Forrester. There will be displays by Meredith Center Maple, DD Forge, Gouin Farmstand and the Cooperative Extension Service of the University of new Hampshire.

In addition, the Grange will feature its dictionary project, which distributes more than 300 dictionaries each year to third-grade pupils at nine public and three private schools in the Lakes Region.

"I love it," said Cookie Boulanger, who recalled one pupil asked if he could give it to his father so he could learn to read, and another who wanted to offer it to his grandfather as a birthday present.

The Grange will also honor both the Granger of the Year and the Citizen of the Year in a ceremony at 2 p.m.

On Saturday evening, the Grange Hall will become a dance hall as Grange hosts a sock hop to the spinnings of DJ Nick. Admission is $5 with no charge for those 12 and younger. Those 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult.

04-29 Forrester and Durand

Sen. Jeanie Forrester presents an American flag in 2013 to Steve Durand, president of the Wicwas Lake Grange, which after flying above the New Hampshire State House graced the Grange Hall in Meredith Center for several years. (Courtesy photo)

Woman rescued

LACONIA — A woman was pulled from the Winnipesaukee River behind the Laconia VFW Monday evening, but a search for another person believed to be in the water was called off when no one was found.
Melanie Sweeney of Laconia was pulled from the water by another woman. Both women were taken to Lakes Region General Hospital, where they were treated for hypothermia
Rescuers searched the river from Rotary Park to the Fair Street bridge, as far as the Water Street boat ramp.
Belmont and Gilford fire department assisted in the search.
– Michael Kitch

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