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Longboat Key Friday, Aug. 9, 2019 1 year ago

In her own words: Dora Walters

A few samples of what Dora had to say.

As a reporter, Dora Walters told all kinds of stories through the printed word. Here are a few samples of her prose, which might help understand her passion for communication.

Dora wrote weekly for the Fannin Sentinel, often in the voice of her dog, Jake. Her final column, completed the day before she passed way, was headlined: Jake Learns Something About His Character. Sentinel owner Elaine Owen,  said it "is one of her best, touching on the moral part of life.'' 

Memo To: Morganton Community Board Association

From: Jake, Head of Security

Dora's final column in the Fannin Sentinel.

Well, gentlemen, I never thought it would happen to a liberal like me. I never dreamed I would think of
such a liberal like me--least of all to say it out loud…
Let me tell you what happened.

The other night I was walking by Petunia Possum’s and I saw something black on one of her back porch sliding glass doors. (She’s the only Pasture Resident with a regular house, though I do have a two-story doghouse custom made by Home  Depot.)      
What I saw was long, skinny and appeared to be trying to enter the house by squishing his way in.     

From where I stood it looked like a  snake. I moved closer…no doubt about it. It WAS A SNAKE.
As I stood there at a safe distance, watching him continue to wiggle, I began to wonder. I don’t like snakes. Yet our philosophy is that all animals are welcome at the pasture. If this snake or any snake would apply to move to the pasture…Would I do the right thing? I don’t know.

Giving up on his effort to get into Petunia’s house, the snake slithered across the porch and into the grass. Whew…glad it’s one decision I didn’t have to make!                                                                                       

Everybody please remember Saturday, Squirrel Fattie Arbuckle and his six kids, One, Two, Three, Four, Five and Six, will have a presentation on their adventure climbing the Statue of Liberty. They were even on Good Morning America where they danced! Believe me, You don’t want to miss this!                                                                                                               
Later this month Randy Raccoon leaves for Plains, Georgia to hear former President Carter preach. 

Less than a month after falling and breaking his hip, the 39th U.S. president was going to be back in church doing what he liked best — teaching Sunday school.

Carter has been telling everybody who would listen that he was going to teach Sunday school again, less than a week after having hip surgery. At least that’s the plan.

Randy says the former president is a man of peace. He was the most powerful man in the world and he is goes back to Plains to teach Sunday School and to teach others to serve.
I can’t wait to hear more about Randy’s trip to see our former President!
Community is safe.

Respectfully submitted,
Head of Security

We chatted with Dora in September, 2018 while preparing our 40th Anniversary special edition, an edition that likely wouldn't have been quite the same without her work. Here's what she said when we asked what was most memorable:

Being on the staff 20-plus years, I can write a book easier than selecting one event/memory. I honestly think they were all were  special..the community spirit, how willing the people were to allow me to peek into their lives and share them, the lady whose picture I took every year as she approached 100 and wouldn’t let anyone else, ringing the bell as Santas for the Goodwill, the ladies at St. Mary’s Royal Rummage sale asking "what you looking for, Dora," being incredibly honored as LBK Citizen of the Year (for just doing my job) helping make laetkes for a dinner at the temple and the day the No Name Storm hit without notice and on duty were Matt and I having the best time as we staggered against the winds, got soaked to skin but we got our photos ... against deadline, too.

But most of all having the GREATEST BOSSES, THE WALSH CLAN, ALL OF THEM And If my knee/leg wasn’t in four pieces, I’d like to be doing it again.

Friend and neighbor Dawn DiLorenzo told us she found a poem Dora had written on her desk, shortly after she passed away. 

Let me have a moment longer, 
Just another moment.
There is so much I will miss,
Just a moment longer.

I want to see the sun
rise over the chill morning sea.
I want to spy the fog
wistfully leaving the green meadow leaf.
I want to hear the rain
thumpingly beat the window square.
I want to feel the wind
roar with a fury I can almost not bear.
I want to savor the air
clean and sweet after a mid-summer wash.
I want to hold the dusk
subtly coaxing the day to its finish."

Please . . .  a moment . . .  just a moment longer.

Learn about Dora's life story here; find out why Observer CEO Matt Walsh calls Dora the consummate journalist here; read Observer staff remembrances of Dora here.

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