Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 04-09-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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4 WOONSOCKET APRIL 9-15, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE | NORTH SMITHFIELD BLACKSTONE WOONSOCKET EDITION As the country navigates these dif- ficult and unprecedented times over the past month, my family has been experiencing our own crisis. Last Tuesday, we lost my grandfa- ther to complications from a stroke. A lifelong resident of Woonsocket, my Pépère lived for more than 60 years in the home he shared with his wife, where he was known for his exuberance for crossword puzzles and his love for his very large family. In the days leading up to his death, we relied on the support and ingenuity of those around us to stay connected at a time when physical distance was a necessary precaution. Unable to see him in the hospital, we kept up a steady stream of phone calls with doctors and nurses as his condition grew worse, then better, then worse again. In the end, he was able to return home on hospice care, and he died with his family at his side, a small blessing during a time when many are unable to see their loved ones in their final days. On the morning of the funeral, my cousins and I gathered in our cars and homes to watch the service by video stream while a small group of immediate family entered the church. At the cemetery, we stood apart from each other, watching silently as the priest said the final prayers to lay him to rest. Throughout the week, family and friends found ways to reach out even as social distancing kept them far away. The kitchen table that had recently become a home office now became a garden of flower arrange- ments, and the delivery trucks driv- ing up our street brought not boxes or groceries, but fruit baskets and chocolates. But it was what happened after the funeral that highlighted the beauti- ful strength of this community and its creativity in coming together in the face of sadness. My aunt, Denise Gray, is the secretary at Globe Park Elementary School, and we learned that several administrators and staff, organized by art teacher Sue Lanoie, were planning to drive by the house later that day since there would be no public wake. I couldn't be there, but the video I watched afterward brought me to tears. As the video begins, a line of cars led by Globe Park Principal Tina Silva appears in front of the house, stretching out of sight as they start their slow procession toward my grandparents' home. Many are hold- ing signs and opening their windows to wave to my Mémère and her chil- dren in the front yard as they pass. Some of them, I learned later, came from as far away as Connecticut to join the procession, which lasted a full four minutes. In the end, more than 40 vehicles drove by the house to honor some- one many of them had never met. It was a sendoff my family will remem- ber for many years, and one I think my Pépère, who loved people and the gatherings that brought them together, would have enjoyed. My Mémère told me later it was the most beautiful thing she'd ever seen. As I write about the people responding to this crisis, including our teachers, I'm reminded every day of the small and large acts by mem- bers of our community that make the sadness and isolation unfolding around us a little more bearable. If the predictions of our state and federal health officials prove accu- rate, many more families will lose loved ones before this disease passes us by. Most of them will not have the opportunity that I had to say good- bye, and will rely on the generosity of others to watch over their loved ones as they pass on. But if the selflessness and creativity I've seen over the past week are any indication, I know that we as a com- munity will continue to find ways to face this challenge together. And I'm confident that we'll come out stron- ger on the other side. A heartfelt 'thank you' in our time of loss By LAUREN CLEM Valley Breeze Staff Writer The procession of cars organized by Globe Park Elementary School teachers and staff passes by the home of the grandparents of Valley Breeze reporter Lauren Clem. R.I. Infrastructure Bank presents savings to city WOONSOCKET – The city of Woonsocket recently received $678,808 in drinking water bond savings from the Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank as part of its Municipal Resilience Program. The funds came from the refinancing of the Clean Water State Revolving Fund and Drinking Water State Revolving Fund bonds and will support projects in the community. Nine communities received $7.8 million in savings as part of the program. IN BRIEF ABOUT US The Valley Breeze is a locally owned newspaper Office location: 6 Blackstone Valley Place, Suite #204, Lincoln, RI 02865 Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Closed weekends and holidays. Call us: 401-334-9555 Fax: 401-334-9994 Online: READER SERVICES DO YOU HAVE A STORY IDEA? Contact Reporter Lauren Clem at lauren@ or call 401-334-9555, ext. 138. 24-hour, 7-day voice mail. ADVERTISING – Call your sales representative, or Director of Sales Jack Birolini at 401-334- 9555, ext. 141 or email: CLASSIFIEDS – Place ads at, or call 401-334-9555 during office hours. NEWS BRIEFS AND CALENDAR EVENTS Let others know about events sponsored by your non-profit organization, church or school. • Deadline: Entertainment news is Friday at noon. All other news is Monday 3 p.m. • Submit: We prefer receiving news via e-mail. Send yours to You may also fax or mail your item. Receipt does not guarantee publication. Event marketing by for- profit businesses requires paid advertising. DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO CELEBRATE? Share the good news of your births, engagements, weddings and anniversaries. This is a free service. Pictures will be returned upon request. • Get forms: Visit, click on "Celebrations" at left, and select a form; or call 401-334-9555; or stop by the office during business hours. OBITUARIES – Obituaries cost $90–$125. They are posted online immediately, and placed in the first available paper. Check with your funeral director for details. ARE YOU LOOKING FOR A PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED STORY? All current stories remain free online for one week after print publication. Older stories are now archived online back to July 2001. We're sorry, but we have few back issues of papers in our offices and cannot provide free library services. • Online: Visit, and click on "Search The Breeze Archive." Use keywords to find old stories. Single stories cost $2.95 through our Newsbank partners. Multi-story packages, which provide lower costs per story, are also available. SUBSCRIPTIONS – The Valley Breeze may be delivered anywhere in the United States, in an envelope, by First Class mail only. The cost is $189 per year, or $4 per week. Phone 401-334-9555 for details. COPYRIGHTS – or its content may not be linked to any other Web site without the written permission of the publisher. News aggregators that solicit advertising may not link City Council - Woonsocket, RI Application to sell beverages in accordance with Section 3-5-17 of the General Laws of Rhode Island has been made at the office of the City Clerk as follows: APPLICATION FOR CLASS BV LIQUOR LICENSE Robert Monteiro, Jr., 350 River Street. e Woonsocket City Council will hold a public hearing in Harris Hall, 169 Main Street on Monday, April 20, 2020 at 7:00 PM. All persons interested and wishing to be heard are invited to attend. Christina Harmon Clerk of the City Council Consumers Propane 762-5461 BOUSQUET OIL 769-0146 139 HAMLET AVE. WOONSOCKET, RI 02895-0628 Service – SALeS – iNSTALLATiON Of gAS & OiL heATiNg equipmeNT • Boilers • Furnaces • Hot Water Heaters WE FILL GAS GRILL TANKS CITY OF WOONSOCKET, RHODE ISLAND Request for Proposal for: Bid# 5970 RFP-Woonsocket Comprehensive Plan Update/Finance Specifications are available on the City of Woonsocket's website, and click on Bids, or email jdesrochers@ Sealed bids will be received by 2:00 PM Wednesday, June 3, 2020 and then publicly read aloud by the Finance Director in the Office of Purchasing, City Hall, 169 Main Street, Woonsocket, RI in the 2nd floor conference room. Individuals requesting interpreter services for the hearing impaired should call the Finance Director at 401-762-6400 seventy-two (72) hours in advance of the bid opening. Responses will be evaluated on the basis of the relative merits of the bid in addition to the price. e City of Woonsocket reserves the right to reject any and all bids, or parts thereof, to waive any irregularity in the bids received and to accept the bids or parts thereof deemed to be most favorable to the best interest of the City. Christine Chamberland Finance Director

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