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by Jay Hobson The morning was bright and sunny, but a stiff, cold wind blew from the northwest, snapping flags and reddening cheeks as spectators and well- wishers lined Geremonty Drive in expectation of returning soldier Sgt. Arthur Barnes’ motorcade. Sgt. Arthur Barnes IV was greeted with a police escort and hundreds of flag-waving supporters outside the town hall as Barnes, recuperating from injuries sustained while on duty in Afghanistan, returned home. “This is great. What a great turn-


out,” Recreation Director Chris Dillon said. Dillon, Anne Fogarty, and Lisa


Wojtas were standing in the bed of a DPW pick-up truck and waving flags


while awaiting Barnes’ arrival. Students streamed out of the high school to take their places along Geremonty Drive in expectation of Barnes’ arrival, which was fleeting. There were no speeches, no photo ops— just a community saying “welcome home” to a returning war hero who thankfully could see and hear their welcome.


High school student Cory Varga, 17, waves the flag as the motorcade with Sgt. Arthur Barnes draws near


Barnes, a National Guardsman, was in Afghanistan in July of last year when the vehicle


in which he was riding, one of three sent to rescue fellow soldiers who were under attack, struck an improvised explosive device (IED) otherwise known as a roadside bomb. “I don’t remember what happened, but I know we had turned around and were heading back when we were hit,” Barnes said. The explosion killed the driver, Robert Grady of


West Burke, VT, a small community in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, and critically injured Barnes. Two soldiers seated behind Barnes were also critically injured while the two soldiers seated behind them were slightly injured and returned to duty. The third vehicle in the convoy stopped to render aid as the first continued on the mission. Barnes was transported to Germany for initial assessment and treatment of his injuries, which included a punctured lung, broken jaw, and spinal injuries, among others. He was then flown to Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington, where his parents, Arthur III and his wife, Janice, joined him. Barnes said he doesn’t remember the events that led up to his injuries. “What I do remember is that we were in a Military


All Terrain Vehicle (MATV), which had replaced the Humvee because of the terrain in Afghanistan. The MATV has better off-road capability,” Barnes said. Barnes is in the process of leaving the military,


which he says could take nine months to a year due to a backlog.


Barnes, speaking from his parents’ home, said he has plans to go back to school full-time and earn his teaching certificate. “I have a degree in Business Administration,


High school students await the arrival of Sgt. Arthur Barnes across from the Town Hall Sgt. Arthur Barnes North Salem’s Got Talent


by Connor Tremblay “What do you cross between a vampire and a teacher? Lots of blood tests,” joked fifth-grade comedian Trevor Kish at the 26th North Salem Elementary School talent show on Thursday, April 14. The school’s gym teacher, Ginny Lavallo, and music teacher Helen Minkle hosted the show. It was Lavallo’s last year hosting the show, and 26 exceptionally talented students performed fantastic acts in the high school auditorium. The acts ranged from singing and tap- dancing to playing the harmonica and telling jokes. Fourth-grader Molly Goodnow started the night off with her piano,


playing the “Star-Spangled Banner.” Then, Daylee Rivera and Kristen Carney had the audience clapping along to their dance routine of “Hot and Cold” by Katy Perry. Other performances included: Morgan Prescott (singing), Alexis Lefebre and Emily Schultz (dancing), Erin Roberts (singing), Taylor Vartanian (piano), Colby Burns (harmonica), Riley Maynard (Brother for Sale), Brianna Marino and Sydney Chretien (dancing), Nicholas Fili (singing), Sam Goodnow (dancing), Brady and Delaney York (drums and singing), Riley Herrick (piano), Meghan Prince and Tori Kish (dancing), Emily Gaudette (singing), Damian Falcione (comedian), Sydney Scanlan (tap-dance), Katie Arcidiano (singing), Cassandra Saif (piano), Ava Bradley and Kayleigh Greenfield (dancing), Madison Cavanaugh (singing), Olivia Bollhorst (baton twirling), Leah and Erin Faber (gymnastics/dance routine), and Cam Gurley (singing).


continued to page 7- Talent


Sgt. Arthur Barnes receiving a commendation at Armored Vehicle School, Fort Drum, NY


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Volume 4 Number 40 April 29, 2011 16 Pages


Warm Welcome Greets Returning Hero


Former Selectman Arthur Barnes, with his son, Arthur IV, at Young Arthur’s graduation from Norwich University in VT


though my past work has been in construction. I went to Maryland originally because the only work I could find in NH at the time was teaching or driving a truck. I didn’t want to drive a truck. I’d like to teach. I worked with a lot of guys that never got a high school diploma—something that never occurred to me here in Salem. Nobody took an interest in them so they could finish up,” Barnes said.


continued to page 7- Welcome Hero


Te Oshkosh Defense Military All Terrain Vehicle, like the one Sgt. Arthur Barnes IV was in when he was injured in Afghanistan


Rockingham Christian Church Hosts 10th Annual Easter Egg Hunt


Fifth-grader Cam Gurley sings “Just the Way You Are” by Bruno Mars


Children 6 and under begin the first egg hunt


by S. Aaron Shamshoyan Despite cold weather and heavy rain,


Rockingham Christian Church’s 10th annual Easter Egg Hunt was a huge success. Over 450 egg-hunting kids came to the event at Rockingham Park on Saturday, where the festivities were held inside. There were bounce houses, face painting, and a live band, all followed by the egg hunt. Lead minister Tom Gerdts felt the event


was very successful. “In spite of the weather, it was a great turnout and everybody had a wonderful time,” he said, adding that


Second-grader Riley Maynard announces his brother is for sale to the audience


Te talented students take a bow at the end of the show


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“RCC loves doing things like this for the community.” There were over 1,000 people total at the hunt. Amy Snyder, Director of Children’s and Family Ministry, was also pleased with the success despite the weather. “We had to survive with the rain, but it worked,” she said. Rockingham Christian Church is located


in Salem, with morning services at 9 and 11:15am, and can be found on the Web at www.rccsalem.com.


photos courtesy of Deanna Saif staff photo by S. Aaron Shamshoyan


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