A community is, ultimately, the sum of its people. Jefferson County is a spot on the map, but it is discovered only in part through its hills, streams, and by-ways. The true way into the soul of a place is to know the lives of those who call it home.

The people you see above are among those whose obituaries or memorial notices appeared in The Monitor over the last year. They represent a rich and varied brew of life.

“Spike” Twohy, we learned, was born in the back of a Hudson under the hangman’s tree between Clancy and Montana City. He worked as a state stock inspector and detective and “made countless friends and a few enemies along the way.”

Patsy Norris spent 26 years working at the Boulder River School and Hospital, but her greatest joys were her grandchildren and great grandchildren. “In Grandma Pat’s world, there was no such thing as a ‘step’ child.  All children were welcomed with open arms and never once doubted how much she loved them.” 

For years, rancher Mick McCauley was known for bidding a thousand dollars or more to make sure he won the pie created by his daughter, Marilyn “Buzzy” McCauley, for the annual baked goods auction at the Jefferson County Fair.

In this issue, you’ll find eight stories about Jefferson County residents, told by the people who loved them. They give us a window into who these folks were and how they lived their lives, revealing not just what they did, but how and why they did it.

And together, they make up a sort of map. The lines of their lives, sometimes straight but more often less so, are the real trails into Jefferson County. We hope you enjoy them.

Keith Hammonds     

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