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Letters: In Memory of Three Women
Grace, Dottie, & Teresa
December 30, 2022

A
village is made up of its people. Sharon Breitling writes in, reflecting on three we’ve lost whose legacy will not be forgotten.

As the year draws to a close I’m reminded of three strong women that Oriental lost recently, two this year and one last year. I’m certain there are others but these three resonate with me. Each made an immense impact on Oriental. They were the driving force behind the founding of important events, traditions, and non-profit organizations.

• Grace Evans (1930-2021)
• Dottie Osmun (1941-2022)
• Teresa Badger (1952-2022)

Grace’s accomplishments were many, but to me her most important contribution was the co-founding of Oriental’s History Museum.

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Grace Evans, Christmas 2019.
She believed the history of the town and of and its founding families should be honored and that a record of that history should be documented and preserved. She relentlessly pursued grants, non-profit status, and volunteers to make the museum what it is today.

Dottie was always known as a lover and performer of music, especially blue-grass. But, most importantly, she transformed Oriental for a weekend each year by co-founding the Ol’ Front Porch Music Festival.

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Dottie & Dick Osmun, 2021.
Music fills the town with people coming from near and far for this event that showcases the town’s lovely homes and highlights the performances of so many multi-talented musicians.

Teresa’s dream was to renovate and transform the historic Holt’s Chapel Community Center that served as a school for black grade school students starting in the 1920s.

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Teresa Badger in Holt’s Chapel Community Center, 2017.
Her leadership helped move the project along step by step as she worked to coordinate grants, volunteers and contractors to make her dream come true. Sadly she will not see the end of the project that is so close to becoming reality.

Sharon Breitling
Oriental, NC
December 30, 2022

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