A songwriter reflects on the Sept. 11 attacks

NEIGHBORS

October 19, 2001|By Lesa Jansen | Lesa Jansen,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

THE HORRIFIC events of Sept. 11 have touched the lives of people around the nation.

Mount Airy resident Michael Cavaliere channeled his feelings into his work. A professional musician and songwriter, he has written and recorded a compact disc, I Didn't Expect to See You (Here So Soon), dedicated to the victims of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington.

"I was thinking about all the souls lost, and the next step for me was to imagine what happened in the spiritual realm - to look at this event from God's point of view," Cavaliere said:

Tell me all about your lives, your husbands and your wives

All about the special people you hold dear ...

I've got a banquet planned for you

Get to know each other, as you pass the food around

Though I'm willing and I'm able

And I've still got lots of room

I didn't expect to see you here so soon

The folk-rock song has been played on the Braddock Heights radio station WJTM. The nonprofit Christian station has received positive feedback from listeners.

"We believe in giving local artists exposure and this [song] has been touching and comforting in these times," said Michael Payne, WJTM station manager.

Cavaliere has sent a copy of his CD to New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani.

He is offering the CD to radio stations and to charitable organizations involved in relief efforts. Cavaliere, who also performed all the instrumentals, plans to donate all the profits from his song to disaster relief efforts.

Speech competition

Mount Airy American Legion Post 191 is seeking high school students to participate in its annual oratorical contest. The winner will receive $400 in scholarship money and qualify to compete for up to $18,000 in scholarship money nationally.

Contestants must prepare an eight- to-10-minute speech about the U.S. Constitution and shorter speeches about specific amendments.

"I believe this builds character, to stand up and speak fluently on something you've researched and believe in," said Mount Airy resident Roy True, local contest chairman. "This prepares students for the working world.

"I review scholarship applications, and sometimes good grades aren't enough today," True said.

The contest is open to high school students at public or private schools or in accredited homeschool programs. Applications are available at high school guidance offices.

The first-place winner will receive $400; second place, $300; third place, $200; and fourth place, $100. Winners advance to contests at the county, district, state and possibly national level. The top three finalists at the national level will receive scholarships of $18,000, $16,000 and $14,000, respectively.

True encourages pupils to participate as early as ninth grade to gain experience and confidence. The local contest will be held Jan. 19.

Information: Roy True, 301-829- 1146.

Scholarship fund

Mount Airy continues to raise money for a scholarship fund established for the families of two local men killed in the terrorist attack on the Pentagon.

Five area beauty salons raised $3,561 during a cutathon Monday. Carousel Beauty Hut, Great Clips, Hair Impressions, Heads Up Hair Fashions and Miracles on Main Street donated the proceeds from their services and the sale of flag pins, and personal contributions.

The stylists will present a check for the scholarship fund to Mayor Gerald Johnson during a ceremony Nov. 5. The fund was established in honor of Ronald Vauk and William Ruth.

This latest donation brings the total to more than $6,600.

Holiday dinner auction

A weekend in Ocean City, tickets to a Capitals hockey game, even a $500 Waterford crystal vase will be auctioned to the highest bidders at this year's Mount Airy Elementary School Holiday Dinner Auction.

In its 17th year, the fund-raiser helps the PTA pay for the school's cultural arts programs, offsets the cost of class field trips and buys educational software for pupils.

"It not only supports the school but 100 percent of the money goes to programs that directly help the kids," said Susan Cole, auction co-chairwoman.

The auction will be held at the school Nov. 17. Local businesses, professionals and parents have donated items such as theme baskets, heirloom dolls, craft items and a case of motor oil.

Organizers say they are accepting donated items, all of which are tax deductible. Information: Susan Cole, 301-829-3913.

Lesa Jansen's Southwest neighborhood column appears each Friday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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