Oct. 12, 1994

The South African-based Sappi has reached agreement with Scott Paper Co. of Philadelphia to buy the S.D. Warren paper division for $1.6 billion, it was announced Monday. “I’m not in a position to comment on very detailed operation plans. Our plan would be to expand any operations, however, not shrink them,” Michiel Reyneke, finance director of Sappi Ltd.’s international operations, said from Johannesburg early yesterday. Sappi has agreed to buy the four S.D. Warren mills, in Westbrook and Skowhegan, Maine, and Muskegon, Michigan, and Mobile, Alabama, plus Scott’s 910,000 acres of woodlands in Maine. Sappi is the largest paper and timber company in South Africa, Reyneke said. He said Warren could expect some Sappi people at the individual mills in three or four weeks.

A mediator will be called in next week to referee the deadlocked contract negotiations between the Gorham Teachers Association and the School Committee. Teachers went public Oct. 4, leaving a flyer on cars parked on school grounds during the Gorham Town Council meeting and at the Gorham High School parents open house. School Committee member Jeffrey Sanborn confirmed that talks are at an impasse and said a labor mediator had been contacted. Martha Corkery, teachers association president, could not be reached for comment.

With the Westbrook High School Marching Band providing the music, the new playground at the Congin School in Westbrook was officially opened this week. Parents raised $20,000 to build it and got together last Saturday to put it together.

Oct. 13, 2004

It’s a safe bet that Caleb Barrieau is not the only 21-year-old from Westbrook who spends his days working on a construction site. Unlike the others, however, Barrieau totes a light machine gun along with his tools to work every day. Barrieau, a specialist in the Army National Guard, has been serving as a carpenter and mason in an engineering unit in Iraq since March, helping rebuild the country’s war-torn infrastructure. Barrieau, home for a three-week leave on Oct. 6, said he joined the Guard on Sept. 11, 2001. He’s been on active duty since early last year.

Mayor Bruce Chuluda is among Westbrook residents who have liens on their property due to unpaid tax bills. A list was released to the City Council last week upon the request of Council President Jim Violette. Chuluda owes about $3,500 in taxes on his Spring Street home. He said the amount is a reflection of one year’s taxes, and the reason that they haven’t been paid yet is that he has not worked full time in more than a year. His job at Mercy Hospital was eliminated in April 2003. Violette said he asked for the list as a way of keeping abreast of how much the city is owned and by whom. However, some allege the request was politically motivated to discredit the mayor.

Every day for the last four years, Ruby Driscoll has driven from her home in Gorham to the Barron Center in Portland to visit her 79-year-old husband, Eddie Driscoll, who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and no longer knows her. The couple moved to Gorham a few years ago from Bangor, where he had been a well-known TV personality on WLBZ since the station went on the air in 1954. “He was truly a broadcasting pioneer,” said TV personality Bill Green, who once served as a cameraman for him. “Eddie was king of Bangor TV.” Ruby Driscoll has become involved in the Gorham community, including volunteering at Baxter Memorial Library and joining the Gorham Historical Society and First Parish Church.

Jon Shaw said his grandmother, Polly Johnson Davis of Gorham, celebrated her 100th birthday at a party Oct. 9 at the home of her daughter, Sally Childs, on Finn Parker Road. Polly has three children and 15 grandchildren. She spends summers at Lake Sunapee, New Hampshire, by herself, and stays with Sally during the winters.

Three mules owned by a Buxton man demonstrated what old-fashioned animal power could do hauling bundles of corn from a field on Saturday during Plow Days at Rusty Knoll Dairy Farm in Gorham. Basil Townsend drove his young pair of mules, hauling a wagon loaded with corn stalks to a stationary chopper, while his nephew, Doug Havu of Buxton, drove another of Townsend’s mules, which worked alone. Townsend said he bought the pair of mules that had never been handled from a Pennsylvania farmer about five months ago. He had no trouble teaching them what to do or how to work together as a team. The annual event featured a variety of vintage farm tractors and related equipment.