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Vergennes Lions elect new officers for 2019

SUSAN P. O'DANIEL holds her Lions Club Melvin Jones plaque with her husband, Mike, past international director Tom Broughton, and past district governor Larry Simino.

VERGENNES — Vergennes Lions recently wrapped up one year and started a new one with the election of new officers. In reviewing the closing year’s accomplishments, Lion Debbie Brace announced that on Memorial Day, the club received second place recognition for its parade float. Shawn Combs won the car, Chris Paquin the $500, and Marsha Hoffman the Basin Harbor Club package through the vehicle raffle.  Lion Paul Vachon announced that the Lions Club scholarships to graduating high school seniors went to Bess Gramling, Olivia Hutchins, Abigail Smith and Cedar Winslow.
The club is currently selling raffle tickets for a 4-box seat at the Red Sox vs. Los Angeles Angels game on Aug. 10.  The tickets are $10 each and the winner will be picked at the Vergennes Lions Annual Charity Auction, for which members are soliciting items now, on July 31 at St. Peter’s Parish Hall.
Plans are also being made for installation of additional accessible ramps on people’s homes, and the building of picnic tables at the Vergennes Swimming Pool.
Incoming president Kathy Dorman was recognized as “The Lion of the Year” by outgoing President Paul Bessette. He also gave a Certificate of Appreciation to Lion Debbie Brace for all of her hard work throughout the year.
Jim Bushey, formerly of the Middlebury Lions, was inducted as a new Vergennes Lion. Lion Jim, along with wife, Carol, lives in Addison during the spring, summer and fall, and spends his winters in Florida.
The highlight of the evening was when Past International Director Tom Broughton presented longtime Vergennes Union High School instrumental music teacher, Susan P. O’Daniel, with the Melvin Jones Award from Lions Clubs International Foundation. This award is given in honor of the 1917 founder of Lions Clubs International, Melvin Jones. In the presentation, Susan was recognized for 40 years of leadership, enthusiasm, commitment and dedication to strengthening the music programs throughout Vermont, but particularly in Vergennes through the high school, our elementary schools, her church, the town band, and various other music groups of which she belongs. Susan expressed her shock and appreciation for the recognition.
In the end, Past President Bessette and Incoming President Kathy thanked the members for their hard work, and recognized the community for the ongoing support of all our projects.

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