Susan Knickerbocker

Do Good: For Nancy Waddell, it’s a lifestyle | HOMETOWN HERO

Do good, wherever you can, whenever you can, and to whomever you can. These are words that Nancy Waddell has set as words to aspire to.

HOMETOWN HERO | No matter what, Sandy Gilbert stays optimistic while helping others

Sandy Gilbert has experienced more than her share of sorrows. And through it all, the popular South Whidbey teacher remains optimistic, helpful and giving for the sake of her family and community.

Ammon Christensen: Youth masks his maturity | HOMETOWN HERO

Editor’s note: Each May, Hometown Heroes features a South Whidbey High School senior chosen by the schools. This year the honor goes to Ammon Christensen because of his volunteerism, mentoring and being a positive role model for peers and adults alike.

Chris Harshman: Practicing the art of practice | HOMETOWN HERO

What are you practicing? Chris Harshman, a South Whidbey volunteer and a music and band teacher, says he’s deliberate as to what he practices in life.

HOMETOWN HERO | Christina Parker: A life of litmus tests

When Christina Parker was asked why she volunteers, she says, “I love it. I am like a kid in a candy store; I want to do everything.” But getting to “yes” takes a bit of thought.

Hometown Hero Susan Jones: A life led by inspiration

When Susan Jones was 8 years old she read Elisabeth Elliot’s book, “Through Gates of Splendor” about five young missionaries who went to South America in 1956 to spread God’s love to a violent remote tribe. The five men were killed.

Phil Ayers believes all deserve a sense of belonging | HOMETOWN HERO

He walked the streets of Seattle day after day after day looking for a job, any job. “I’ll never forget that feeling of not belonging,” says Phil Ayers.

Jim Craft, Living in the world, but not of it | HOMETOWN HERO

What does it mean living in this world, but not of the world? Jim Craft believes living attached to the things and rewards of this world will never bring contentment.

Hometown Hero Emily Martin: Caring for all creatures great and small

She’s taking a practice run in the pole vault — eyes straight ahead, pole raised, legs churning — then suddenly, she stops. She bends over, gingerly picking up a bug on the path and placing it out of harm’s way, then continues her vaulting. It’s a small example of Emily Martin’s reverence for all of life, say her grandparents, Stella and Chuck Martin.

Dorothy ‘Dotty’ McDonald: Worry is a waste of her time

Dorothy “Dotty” McDonald, this month’s Hometown Hero, is a hard-working volunteer who doesn’t believe in worrying about anything.

HOMETOWN HEROES| DAVE AND LENNA ROSE: An inconvenient opportunity

What is our response when asked for our help or see a need at an inconvenient time? Dave and Lenna Rose do not look at life’s requests as inconvenient, says Sam Lungren, a friend of the family.

Dr. Ric Prael has lived a life of service above himself | HOMETOWN HERO

“He’s an inspiration, as he truly exemplifies the Rotary motto ‘Service above Self,’” says Jenanne Murphy, a fellow Rotarian. “He has the vision to see, faith to believe and courage to act.”

South Whidbey’s Byron and Dana Moffett, Humanitarians at home and abroad | Hometown Heroes

People who know Byron and Dana Moffett describe them as humanitarians, concerned with the welfare of all people, and the alleviation of suffering.

Hometown Hero Jon Poolman aims for excellence

Jon Poolman learned early on to strive for his own personal perfection.

Hometown Hero Ginny Mayer is known for her deeds o’ plenty

Ginny Mayer has a mission in her life, and though she says she comes up short every day, she tries to live by a philosophy best summed up by John Wesley: “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the places you can, to all the people you can as long as you ever can.”

Barb Strom appreciates all of life, and her neighbors appreciate her | HOMETOWN HERO

Barb Strom has an appreciation for all of life, humans, animals and nature, and is a champion good neighbor to all. So much so that Harry Jestor, one of Strom’s neighbors, says, “In the tough real estate market today, if I were considering selling my home, I might want to include the statement: ‘You would live just down the street from Barb Strom.’”

HOMETOWN HERO | Don Dils turns his focus outward with everyday kindness

“I can still see him sitting on our couch even though it was over 30 years ago,” says Don Dils, this month’s Hometown Hero.

Hometown Hero is motivated by her curiosity of the world

What if people were more curious? Would it open our minds more, to be less judgmental, less fearful and less disappointed perhaps?Victoria Santos says she’s… Continue reading

South Whidbey student puts her heart into action

The suffering in this world can make a heart heavy. Zora Lungren feels deeply about all the sorrow in the world, but she found the best way to deal with her feelings is to turn them into service — she has a “heart of action.”

HOMETOWN HERO | Mastering the art of understanding

Peace in the world just may be possible. If we all seek first to understand, rather than to be understood. People that have encountered Norma Smith describe her as an empathic listener with the desire to understand others. Whether she is volunteering with her youth group, mentoring young adults or serving in the political world, Smith asks questions and listens with no other agenda than to comprehend.