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Archives Table of Contents

New Americans Appreciate Their Drivers - January 2012
Arlene's Peace Corps Philippines Reunion Video - December 2011
CARV Member Nick Hoesl Takes on the Penny - November 2011
Return to Sierra Leone - November 2011
Report from Peace Corps 50th Reunion byNick Hoesl - October 2011

New Americans Appreciate Their Drivers

From January 2012

CARV’s New Americans Outing on December 10th counted about 70 people, including drivers, passengers, and helpers at Mt. Auburn Presbyterian. Our invitees came from Central African Republic, Rwanda, Tanzania, Congo, Cameroon, Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, Morocco and Panama. This year, they charged admission to the Krohn Conservatory, but the ever-resourceful Susan Robinson went over there and got free passes for everybody. We also swung a deal with the Behringer-Crawford Museum, in which everybody got free admission in exchange for some photos of traditional Christmas activities (great photos donated by Lori Boerger of Christmas in Romanian villages, and a photo from George Fee of PCV’s singing Christmas Carols in Tegucigalpa), and some Mexican Christmas decorations handmade by John’s passengers, Maribel and Jennifer.)

Artie the Magician said to tell all of you how much he loves welcoming the international invitees to his Magic Shoppe. The lunch was large and hearty as usual – thanks to Barry, Gayle and other volunteers at the church.

And now, what you’ve been waiting for – I got a chance to interview some of the passengers, and here’s what they said about you and the outing:

Enilda and Aguileo said they liked the little trees and the trains. They said: “George is a very good person, he deported himself in such a friendly way, we feel like he is our neighbor.”

Mariela said that her driver was so interesting, had traveled a lot, and told them about the historical connections with the things they saw. Margarita said that she was very nice and chatty.

Reina and her little daughter said that their driver was a dear kind person, who showed them wonderful things, and struck up a great relationship with the little girl.

Maribel said that John was “an excellent person, very nice. He had a lot of patience and he explained a lot.

The other Maribel, with the young daughter, was very excited about the way her daughter responded to the group singing of Christmas songs: “My daughter is always so shy, she always hangs back and doesn’t participate. But when they asked for people to join in the Christmas songs, she stepped forward and sang with them!” Many thanks to the CARV Carolers and especially to our back-up band, Amy Robinson.

Hipolito said that his driver was very friendly and showed him so many things he would never have been able to visit by himself.

Carolina’s passengers said: “She was very attentive to us and very friendly, and she knows a lot. She explained to us about the customs, traditions. She took us to the Krohn. And she took great care of our mother – she is a great friend!”

Alberta's PC Philippines Reunion Video

From December 2011

Alberta Hemsley, who served in the Peace Corps in the Philippines from '67 - '69, recently created a video from digitized slides taken from her collection previously housed in old boxes and carousels (sound familiar)? It's called Filipino Flashbacks with Philippines Group XXI. Click on the title if this article to view it or go to You Tube:

CARV member Nick Hoesl Takes on the Penny

From November 2011

Nick Hoesl (Afghanistan 65-67) recently wrote a guest column in The Enquirer entitled, "Here's two cents' worth about pennies." He said in part, "I was brought up to respect the value of every coin I touched, especially the one graced by the portrait of Abe Lincoln. So it is with some regret that I am now advocating the abolition of the penny. If Ben Franklin were alive today, he would say, "A penny saved is a waste of time, and taxes."

Is there anything left that pennies are good for? I mean other than dumping them in those little cups on store counters. Some of my sedentary neighbors have found they have staying power as bingo covers. Others hoard them in piggy banks. Another guy I know likes to leave a puny penny in restaurants when service is ...

Return to Sierra Leone

From November 2011

We all dream of returning to our country of service and some of us are fortunate to be able to do just that. Faith Lester and and Arlene Golembiewski, who served separately in Sierra Leone in the mid '70s, recently traveled there thanks to an NPCA Friends of Sierra Leone-sponsored trip. Faith was returning for the second time in three years, Arelene for the first time since her years of service.

Faith and Arlene shared their experiences at the November CARV potluck and social event. See the photo gallery at the right for some of their pictures and presentations.

Both women have established ongoing relationships with their villages. Faith is raising funds for a new preschool and has engaged her Mason, OH elementary school students in the Salone PEP Club, promoting peace through music. Arlene is helping build a computer lab for the girls' school in her village - but first they need to provide electricity, using solar panels. For more information, contact Arlene at and Faith at

Report from Peace Corps 50th Reunion by Nickj Hoesl

From October 2011

Five thousand Returned Peace Corps Volunteers came together in Washington DC last month to reconnect, celebrate and make their voices heard on the historic 50th Anniversary.

With so many returnees at this milestone event, I missed rubbing shoulders with other CARV members, such as Gail Linkletter. Charlene McGrath joined me with 88 other Afghan returnees who were served dinner at the Afghan Embassy, courtesy of Afghan Ambassador Hakimi on Friday evening.

All day Thursday was set aside as Advocacy Day, to meet senators and congressional reps from our area and remind them why the Peace Corps matters and how it benefits our nation. Of Ohio’s senators, only Sherrod Brown found the time to meet with Ohioans over coffee at the Congressional Visitors Center. After lunch Steve Chabot heard from a handful of his constituents in his office. Fellow CARV member Evan Gay was also not shy informing him of our future goals in increasing the Peace Corps budget and supporting the proposed project of Peace Corps history. Chabot was aware of Senator Rob Portman’s co-sponsoring this endeavor to be created on federal land in Washington.

We also met with an assistant of Ohio’s second congressional district, Jean Schmidt and a representative of Senator Portman’s office. Schmidt’s staff member assured us that Jean is very supportive of the Peace Corps goals. Both Chabot and Schmidt are members of the Foreign Relations Committee.

That afternoon there was a reception for us in the Rayburn Office Building. Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) read the memo he delivered on the floor and into the Congressional Record, elaborating on fifty years of Peace Corps accomplishments.

Another highlight was Saturday’s panel discussion hosted by Bill Moyers ( Peace Corps first Deputy Director under Shriver) entitled, “The Future of the Peace Corps.” One of the panelists was Peru’s Alejandro Toledo, who remarked: “The Peace Corps opens a window to the world for many people. I went through that window and became president of my country.”

On Saturday evening over 800 streamed through security and into the decorated atrium of the Ronald Reagan Building. MC Chris Matthews of MSNBC (Swaiziland (1968-70) reminded us that when President Reagan was asked to trim the Peace Corps budget, he told them: “I can’t cut the PC budget because I just talked to a president in the Pacific Islands and he told me that the Peace Corps Program was the best thing to ever happen in his country.”

The climax of our four days was Sunday’s “Walk of the Flags” from Arlington Cemetery to the Lincoln Memorial. The walk and the ceremony was as impressive as the one I took 25 years ago. We paid tribute to the 280 volunteers who died in Peace Corps service and a special tribute was paid to the memory of Sargent Shriver, reminding us that Sarge’s spirit will live in our hearts forever.
Nick Hoesl
Afghanistan (1965-67)
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