The first picture I am sharing this week was taken during the Cranberry Festival parade of 1971. Not sure who is driving the "Green Drag'in", but I do recognize Smoky Wilson as one of the boys who is talking to the driver.

In the background you can see the Bandon Shoe Repair shop, which after the fire was Fred Tuttle's Counter, a soda shop and newsstand. I believe that Walt and Pearl Ingwersen owned the shoe repair shop at that time. Just to the left you can see the east wall of the Bandon Theater, and to the right you can see the small house where Reta and Vane (Bum) Gartin and her sister, Alda Mars, lived and operated the local liquor store. The liquor store is about where Bandon Coffee Cafe is located now.

The second picture was taken in August of 1960 during construction work on Highway 101 at the top of the hill. The 76 station was owned at one time by Lanny Boston and was on the corner of 101 and 11th where Banner Bank is now located. Behind it you can see the back of the former Bank of Bandon building which later became Washington Mutual and a number of other banks. On the west side of the highway you can barely see the sign for Ralph's, which later became Gerry's, later Frasers and now is the Asian Garden.

I have often shared pictures of several buildings, which housed Ray's Pharmacy over the years, but the third photo I'm sharing is such a neat picture of Phyllis (left) and Bob Ray, in one of their downtown locations, that I wanted to share it. This may have been taken in the shop where Winter River Books is now (former Shindler's Rexall Drug Store), or it may have been when they were on the other side of Second, about where Bandon Card & Gift is now. I think the other woman was a pharmacist, but I can't remember her name. I do know that Phyllis Ray died Jan. 27, 2016, at the age of 92. She was as beautiful in her 90s as she was in this picture taken many years ago.

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I was so sorry to learn of the death of Gary Brink, 69, husband of Jessica Markham-Brink, who died suddenly Saturday afternoon at Shutter Creek Correctional Institution outside of North Bend, where he had been for several months. I know this is a terrible loss for Jessica and their two children, Aiden and Willa, who will have lots of loving support from her mother, Lynn Davies. Jessica manages Lynn's Old Town businesses, including The Toy Room, By the Sea Treasures and Bandon Card & Gift Shoppe.

My heart goes out to the family.

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Bandon students know their science!

Several months ago the State Department of Education released its Oregon report card for 2016-17, and I just kept putting off publishing what I had learned because of the amount of time I had to spend compiling the data.

I looked at all school districts in Coos County, as well as Port Orford-Langlois 2CJ in Curry County.

The per pupil spending cost for each district was also posted, along with the state average which is $11,822 per student. Before I get into the test scores, I will share the PPS for each district. As expected the two smallest districts. Powers and Port Orford/Langlois had the highest per pupil cost at $18,137 and $17,486 respectively. Myrtle Point was third at $13,195, followed by Bandon at $12,847; Coquille, $12,808; Coos Bay, $10,980 and North Bend, $10,355.

The test results are broken down into three subjects: English Language Arts, Mathematics and Science. The results for both English and math are broken down to students in grades 3-5, students in grades 6-8 and students in grade 11. Test results for science came from three grades: 5, 8 and 11.

After writing down each of the scores for those who met or exceeded the standard, I then looked at each list to see which school (grade) had the top percentage in each of the three subjects.

In English, Bandon 6-8 graders were tops with a met or exceeded rate of 86.8 percent, compared to the state average of 79.1 percent; Coquille 3-5 graders were tops at 82.6 percent (state average of 71 percent); and Pacific High School's 11th graders had 100 percent of their students meet or exceed the state average of 88 percent.

In math, Powers had the top percentages for both 6-8 graders (76.5 compared to the state average of 68.5 percent) and juniors (77 percent compared to the state average of 62.6 percent); while Coquille 3-5 graders were tops with 76.9 percent meeting or exceeding the state standard, compared to the state average of 71.2 percent.

But when it came to science, students in the Bandon School District were tops at all three grade levels, with fifth graders at 94.3 percent (66 state average); eighth graders at 78.4 percent (62.8 state average) and juniors, 76.6 percent (57.8 percent). The average for the three Bandon grades was 83.1 ... which was far better than the number two district (Port Orford-Langlois) at 70.6 percent, followed by number three North Bend at 57.27 percent. Myrtle Point had the lowest average percentage at 51.9 percent ... more than 30 percentage points less than Bandon.

Now I will return to more information about Bandon. In English, 62.5 percent of 3-5 graders met or exceeded the standard, compared to the state average of 71 percent. Again, 6-8 graders were tops at 86.8 percent (compared to the state average of 79.1 percent), and 11th graders fared almost as well as Pacific juniors, with 94 percent meeting or exceeding the standard, compared to the state average of 88 percent. Close behind them were Powers 11th graders at 92.3 percent.

In the math category, Bandon's 3-5 scores averaged 69.4 percent, compared to the state average of 71.2 percent; 6-8, 69.2 percent (state average 68.6 percent) and 11th graders, 68 percent met or exceeded (compared to the state average of 62.6 percent).

For those of you who want to read more data on the local districts or learn more about other districts in the state, go to

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As I am writing my column tonight (Sunday), I realized that a helicopter had been flying over my house way longer than usual. It appeared that it must have picked up a patient at the hospital (which is a couple of blocks away from my house) as it headed north toward Coos Bay. But instead, it was apparently having a hard time finding the landing pad at the hospital because it was making a large circle and was headed back over my house. Finally, the pilot found what he was looking for and all is quiet ... until they take off again.

Whenever I see (hear) a helicopter land at the hospital, I know what it means: that someone is seriously ill and needs to be life-flighted to a larger hospital. Pilots often risk their own safety to maneuver these copters into tight places and in bad weather, but they definitely provide a much-needed service for critically ill people.

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My boyfriend, who reads Coffee Break religiously, called my attention to an article a couple of weeks ago, which was headlined: "SEA talk on marine debris super highway set for Jan. 20." I wondered why he wanted me to read the article ... but it wasn't long before I knew.

It starts outs: "Five Jabberwockies extremely cleverly telephoned obese botulisms, but five purple pawnbrokers tickled Pluto." And it goes on from there, ending: "Progressive fountains laughed quickly, then two chrysanthemums annoyingly fights one."

It seems that one of the CB files was corrupted, which resulted in the hilarious gibberish that followed.

At City Hall, we had something almost like that occur this week when our new electric department supervisor Jim Wickstrom answered a constituent's question, and copied me ... from an email that belonged to someone named Tanya DePew. I tried to figure out if we had a new employee in the department, and, if not, why was she appearing to represent the city.

It turns out that his email had been corrupted ... and no one knew anyone named Tanya DePew.

I should understand since my Facebook page has been hacked six or seven times and sends emails to all the people in my friends account. I have changed my password over and over ... and over again, but to no avail. Not sure what else I can do, or if it even matters.