Michigan may have been where he was born and raised, but Gordon’s heart and soul reside in Ft. Lauderdale. There he spent seventeen amazing summers breathing in the pure, pollen-free air coming off of the ocean, bobbing in the surf as a kid, surfing on its waves as a teen and working on its shoreline at Jack’s Beach Service during summer breaks from Albion College. Years later, Gordon retired from Interlochen Center for the Arts in northern Michigan. Today he and his wife and their rescued Australian Shepherd live in the woods outside of Traverse City. And when winter days grow short and the skies turn grey, his warm memories of Florida’s sand and surf make him smile.
Harry V. Berg
Educator. Poet. Optimist. These three traits characterized Harry’s life. They described his career as a director of continuing adult education programs at Hillsdale and Albion Colleges. They reflected the joy he found in his family. They infused his writing. And, they formed the ministry of his Faith. He loved his hometown of Detroit, yet despite the trauma he experienced during the hurricane, he always had an enduring soft spot in his heart for his “Myammah.”
Even as a young girl, Emilee could draw and she could sing. Not like a kid. Like a grown-up. Her voice made your eyes well up with tears. Her drawings often elicited comments like, “Emilee drew this?!” So years later when her parents dropped her off at Grand Valley State University, all bets were on her to major in the arts. But no one makes a living by drawing or singing, right? So, to be safe, she majored in Marketing. But, Emilee’s creativity had other plans for her. She picked up a guitar and learned to play it. She wrote songs. She helped found an indie acoustic band, The Crane Wives. They recorded. They sold out venues. They won awards. All the while, she drew and drew and drew. She illustrated album art and zodiac posters for another indie group, The Accidentals. And, she beautifully made my dad’s story come to life. In the end, because she so courageously listened to the creative voice within her, Emilee became a real live professional artist.