Explanations unknown

Our ’50s and ’60s were well populated by UFOs! (most called them flying saucers and scoffers said “sun spots!”)
Unidentified flying objects, as they became officially and seriously known, were being sighted everywhere, and our border skies must have been among their favourites haunts because almost every lake dweller here had his stories!
Our Atlantis seemed to be pulling in admirers from outer space!
Whenever I visited the Kielczewski family at Rat River near Kettle Falls, their mother, Annie, would sweep her gaze over the horizon every morning and bring us up to date on her UFO sightings. These were rather regular to the south, above the U.S.
One of her sons, Paul, then driving transport trucks into Minnesota, would tell of a UFO startling him by rising alongside the highway in the early morning.
The late Horace Bowes saw one above his boat in the morning mists of eastern Rainy Lake, and Jay Handberg had his stories of these circular apparitions around his Campbell’s Camps, close to Quetico Park.
For a change of location, I phoned Gravelburg, Sask. one day to hear what an RCMP officer had to report. He was stationed there by the Research Council of Canada specifically to watch for UFOs, which seemed to have been plentiful in that area also.
He could more or less verify that was the case but whenever one or more UFOs showed up above town, and once above a park just across the road from his office, he would be out of town investigating a sighting from the day before.
He said there was no doubt something strange was occurring because there would be dead cattle reported—some of them still giving off smoke as if struck down only hours earlier. There would be brush and trees on fire around pastures where cattle were either dead or missing completely.
There was some measure of panic in certain corners of the country, but no one around here saw too much of an alarming nature during this phenomenon that seemed so widespread. Then the stories came along less frequently and I doubt if anyone here can claim any recent knowledge.
The UFOs seem to have disappeared from our skies at least 30 years ago, almost as if they have not been hatching well lately, whatever the reason.
But if you missed seeing them when they were swooping around here, you still can testify that the stories were coming almost up everyday and you might remember some questionable explanations. But lots of those who actually saw them are probably still around—though perhaps refusing a comment for fear of ridicule!
There also once was the legend concerning a certain headless horseman of Sleepy Hollow and other stories that we won’t go into any further today. Sometime, and soon I hope, we just may have more to go on!
• • •
I trust you have kept the March 11 copy of Maclean’s magazine which shouts out its satisfaction over Canada’s tremendous showing in the Salt Lake City Olympic Games.
Not only our Bare Naked Ladies band received world-wide attention, but the American hosts have just as much reason for pride over their unselfish appreciation!
• • •
We hear that another author has emerged in Fort Frances, where retired teacher Frances Shelfantook is reported working on her third book about relatives from Sweden.
• • •
Bob Hamilton was receiving condolences only a week ago over his bad luck of several winters’ attempting to offer skiing and tobogganing at his slide out on the bark piles en route to the airport.
Then came the storm he was waiting for, only the thaw was tight on its heels!
Considering bad luck for him previously at Bear’s Pass, he deserves better returns for his persistence.
• • •
Back in 1968, David Marsh learned that his only brother, Donald, three years older, had been killed during a robbery of his company’s new store in California.
Donald had gone there after the Second World War for his health, which improved in the southern heat. For a while, he drove a dairy truck, then had just opened the store for the same business.
He left a wife and three young children. The murderer was never caught.
• • • 
Most don’t build more than one or two homes for personal use but up on Hill Road in Alberton, seniors Kurt and Margaret Schafer live in the seventh house he has put together for themselves.
Down east, they left six homes he built at Watertown, Burlington, and near Dundas. Finally, they have been content to stay put!
But now we’re told that Margaret suffered a broken leg last week, in the medical clinic of all places, where the doctors forgot to install an elevator. She is 80.
• • •
Our Allan Cup Canadians should have been good enough to challenge the Olympic team that represented Canada in that other big win the same year (1952). At least ours were rated up to NHL standards by more than one observer.
That was high praise because there were only six NHL teams in action back then—a fact that made our Canadians so outstanding. But any team seeking the Allan Cup ten had to be top drawer.
Unlike the carefully selected Gretzky gang at Salt Lake City, however, the Fort Frances bunch were out again next season after a second triumph. This time, it took a nine-year campaign before they conquered the whole wide west again in 1961—and the intermediate championship.
This was another way of staying in the senior hockey sphere without encountering such heavy expenses as before.
While their second route to the top didn’t cover the eastern half of Canada again and some of the old glory had faded, they had brought in more younger players and again were on top as best in the west.
Now it’s time for everyone to contribute in some way to salute their achievements—proof that Fort Frances can always manage to forge to the top. If you send me your ideas for their June celebration, I’ll be glad to pass them on.
Because it was indeed an honour to be associated with the never-say-die Canadians.

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