Hudson-Litchfield News

100th Birthday Party Held

by Lynne Ober

Friends, family, and sisters gathered to celebrate the 100th birthday of Sister Germaine Fagnant at Presentation of Mary Academy.

Sister Germaine was born on June 6, 1905 in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.  She was the fifth of six children born to her parents, Herman Fagnant and Honorine Fontaine.  All of her siblings are deceased.

Sister Germaine attended elementary school at St. Ann School in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.  But high school found her in Canada where she attended Granby and Acton Vale.  She returned to Rhode Island for college and attended Catholic Teachers’ College where her love of teaching was confirmed.

On August 16, 1927 she took her first vows in the Sisters of the Presentation of Mary and took the religious name of Sister Marie Mediatrice.

Sister Germaine has lived a full life of service and love.  She has served in Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire.

Although she’s been primarily a teacher, she did spend one year as a cook.  Ask her what she wanted to accomplish when teaching? and she’ll smile and say, “To help my students love God and to equip them with good skills.”  Sister Germaine primarily taught fifth and sixth grades.  She specialized in teaching both French and English.


Sister Germaine, on the left, reads the card that accompanied the scrapbook at her birthday party.

Sister Germaine has thrived in the religious life.  When asked what she liked best in her religious life?, she stated, “Everything.”  She has found that the religious life parallels life – hard moments, joyful moments coupled with a life of satisfaction.  It was the perfect niche for her.

Sister Germaine served as Mother Superior for one year.

Today she is a very spry centurion who likes to listen to music, read, and knit for the poor.  She’s seen a lot of changes in the hundred years she’s been around.  One of her wishes was to have an airplane ride.  She’s never been up in the air.

The birthday celebration began with everyone gathered in the Parlor at Presentation of Mary Academy to chat and watch Sister Germaine open her gifts.  Then a PowerPoint presentation was given that celebrated the life and accomplishments of Sister Germaine. 

One of her nieces shared a story about Sister Germaine.  She was the last of three children to be taught by Sister Germaine and the only one to reveal the sister’s real name to her classmates.  Recalling how Sister Germaine told her in French that she would see her after school, she remembered the angst as she waited for this confrontation.

Other reminisces about her teaching career included the story that at every recess Sister Germaine threw open all the classrooms windows, cleaned everything with Lysol, and waiting for her students to return.  She did this even in the dead of winter.  Family laughed that no one dared to be sick in her classroom.

Her nieces and nephew performed a musical entertainment for the audience before everyone joined a sing-along of Sister Germaine’s favorite songs.

It was a wonderful afternoon of celebration of a life filled with love. 


Doing What’s Right is the Right Thing to Do

by Doug Robinson

When Hudson resident, Gary Carney, went shopping for a wood shaper at Akins Machinery Inc., Hudson, New Hampshire, the last thing he or anyone at Akins Machinery Inc. imagined was to find $6,950 in cash stashed in the electrical connection box.  Carney describes:  “When we opened the electrical box to find out how many horsepower, it just came spilling out!”

Evidently, the wood shaper, previously owned by a Hudson resident who had recently died, was now on consignment to Akins Machinery for sale.  Akins Machinery Inc., having a reputation as a business that “builds business by earning your trust”, agreed to sell her husband’s tools on a consignment basis.

The machine in which the money was found
The machine in which the money was found

Unknown to anyone, was the fact that her husband had a habit of hiding money where his “wife could not find it.”  To further complicate things, he would then forget where he had hid the money, only to later find his hidden treasures in a drill press, or some other secret place or tool within his workshop!  Evidently, her husband chose the security of his tools to hide his money, rather than investing the money in a bank or even his mattress.

“Doing what is right”, not only describes the philosophy of Akins Machinery Inc., but it also describes the philosophy of life by which president Richard Akins lives.  Upon learning about the new found money, Richard Akins called up the owner of the wood shaper, alerted her to their findings and returned the monies to her, all $6,950.  Akins Machinery Inc. then inspected the entire consignment in efforts to locate any remaining monies for their customer.

Akins Machinery Inc. is a Hudson based Company, located off Executive Drive, Hudson.  They are a full service woodworking machinery dealer in New England, offering both new and used equipment, parts, supplies, service and technical support.  Belfab, Cantek, Colonial Saw and Ritter are only a few of the nationally recognized companies represented by Akins Machinery, Inc.

Doing what is right is what Akins Machinery Inc is all about.  “It was the right thing to do…I just wanted to do what was right, states Richard Akins.”  It is no wonder that Akins Machinery has a wall full of awards which represent their commitment to honesty and integrity:  “2001 Dealer of the Year”, “Top 10 Dealers” award from Strieberg, list only two of the more than 25 awards Akins Machinery, Inc. has been awarded since 1998. 

While a financial reward was offered to Akins, he stated he “wasn’t interested, he was just pleased and happy to do the right thing.”

In today’s society where people seek public applause and public recognition by claiming to have found treasure in an attic or to have found artifacts in their backyard, it is gratifying to know that Hudson has folks like those at Akins Machinery Inc. who believe that doing the right thing is above all, the right thing to do.


Hudson School Board Awards 14 Retirees

by Maureen Gillum

In a special presentation of awards to retirees at the June 6 Hudson School Board meeting, Chairman David Alukonis graciously recognized and thanked the teachers and staff members of SAU 81, who are retiring at the end of June.  “These 14 outstanding individuals have given an enormous amount to the students and school system of Hudson,” stated Mr. Alukonis, “and our community is indebted to them and touched by them forever.”  On a personal level, the Chairman quipped that he had almost half of all the retirees during his student path in Hudson a few decades ago and thanked them for his personal development.  Collectively, the 14 retirees served the town of Hudson 420 years or an average of 30 years each.  One award recipient, Collette Deneault, a Nottingham West Elementary School Grade 2 teacher of 25 years, thanked her students and acknowledged her 93 year old mother as her special inspiration, “she’s always striving to make a difference -- this year she made over 800 pairs of mittens for the NWES community tree of need.”  Hudson sincerely thanks these outstanding educators and service providers for their exemplary years of service and wishes them all the best in their retirements:

Bob Schaller     15 years, Special Education, Alvirne High School

Kris Beaudette  16 years, Grade 1 & 2, Nottingham West Elementary

Ann Myer         21 years, English, Alvirne High School

Collette Deneault  25 years, Grade 2, Nottingham West Elementary

Lee Richard,     25 years, Principal, Hudson Memorial School

Bob Sidway      28 years, Business/Department Head, Alvirne High School

Tom McIntyre   30 years, Science, Alvirne High School

Jeanne Brown   31 years, Food Service Manager, Hudson Memorial School

Heather Matson37 years, Social Studies, Hudson Memorial School

Josephine Patsos    37 years, Language Arts, Hudson Memorial School

Peg Lavoie       37 years, Social Studies, Alvirne High School

Dick Turner      38 years, Social Studies, Hudson Memorial School

Mary Brannigan39 years, Grade 1, Hills Garrison Elementary

Eileen Amburg  41 years, Guidance, Dr. H.O. Smith and Library Street


Eight of SAU #81’s 2005 Retirees (left to right): Jeanne Brown, Bob Sidway, Mary Brannigan, Lee Richard, Collette Deneault, Kris Beaudette, Eileen Amburg, and Bob Schaller.

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