Tag Archives: Easy Valley Eight

Day 243: Warren

6 Dec

A few weeks ago, I attended the memorial service for a friend and esteemed member of the community. There were a great many people in attendance and after the service, many of them stayed to visit for a while. As I was walking through the room where the gathering was taking place, I saw Warren. I know Warren because he was with the Easy Valley Eight when my friend Dick Cottle was the manager of the group. And I have always felt a connection to Warren because he looks like my Uncle Tommy might have looked had he had the chance to grow a few grey hairs.

As Warren and I chatted that day, he asked me, “Do you remember when you brought Banana Cream Pies for the band?” I was amazed because it had been years since I had done that but for Warren the memory of that dessert was still palpable. How lovely is that?

Years ago I knew a woman who had quit baking and cooking and instead began painting because she did not like the fact that food was a “temporal” art. I guess that is true… but aren’t we all merely temporal beings? Most of us only live on after we have died if we have had an impact on other humans. While it is true that many artists have lived on because of their craft, it is also true that others have lived on for other reasons.

Last evening I was told that Warren would be having dinner at Beasy’s on the Creek tonight. When I had a break in my work schedule, I hurried over to the restaurant and walked in the front door and there in front of me was Warren. He had just arrived for dinner… and I couldn’t help but think that there was a divine hand involved in this pie delivery. And of course Warren received a Banana Cream Pie!

Finally, because my pie “art” is so temporal, a few days ago, my lovely daughter and I created a short video about making pie dough. It is a tiny step towards immortality but it may also help a few people make a better pie dough. Enjoy!


Day 47: Remembering Dick Cottle

24 May

Dr. Richard Cottle came to Ashland from Kansas in the early 1950’s.  He was a lawyer who practiced law for more than forty years.  He was a municipal judge in Ashland as well as a city councilman. He was named Ashland Chamber Man of the Year. And many people know him because he was a member of the Firehouse Five and the Easy Valley Eight.

I first met Dr. Cottle when I took Business Law at Southern Oregon State College. He loved to tell the story of how I would always complain that the law was not fair; and he would reply, it may not be fair, but it’s the law. That was a hard lesson for me.

Over time, Dick Cottle became a friend and mentor to my husband and me.  We got to know his wife and his children and their families; he became a friend to our children as well. We all felt special to be included in his group of family and friends.

Apple Almond Pie – given to Dr. Cottle’s family on the first anniversary of his passing

When I told Dick the lawyer jokes that I knew he never laughed; instead he seemed to shake his head in disbelief.  “How did things come to this?” he seemed to be thinking. Well, I hope he knows that I really was just trying to make him laugh.  I will close with one of those jokes.

A man and his young daughter were walking through a graveyard observing the varied gravestones when they ran across one that read: Here Lies a Lawyer and a Good Man.  The young lady thought a moment and stated: Look Dad, they buried two people in this grave!

Or maybe just one great man. We miss you Doc.