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November 23, 2012

Heard Around Town: Salem to honor a hero from World War II

SALEM — It has been a long time coming, but Adrian Pelletier is about to get the recognition he deserves in his hometown.

The City Council will vote at its next meeting to name a square in memory of Pelletier, who was killed in World War II. A U.S. Army paratrooper, he died on June 8, 1944, two days into the Normandy invasion. He is buried in France.

Pelletier was one of six Salem brothers who served in World War II. Today, he is survived by a sister, Rita Lebrecque, who received a long-overdue burial flag for her late brother this fall. It was provided by the office of U.S. Sen. John Kerry and had flown over the U.S. Capitol.

Following the flag presentation, Kim Emerling, the director of veterans services in Salem, attended a meeting of the Salem Veterans Council at which someone asked whether a square had been named in Pelletier’s honor. That got the ball rolling.

The council took a preliminary vote last week, after which Lebrecque was notified of the plans.

“She’s completely thrilled,” Emerling said

Pelletier Square will be at the corner of Charter Street and Hawthorne Boulevard.

Dog named Bob

There was quite a show Monday on the Essex Street pedestrian mall.

Kate Bedard was walking down the mall shortly before 2 p.m. next to her dog, Bob, a large, black Newfoundland. Bob was hitched to a wagon and lugging a Champagne bowl that Bedard was taking to Bernard’s Jewelers to have engraved.

It was a scene out of another century.

When someone in a passing group of teens spotted the friendly and massive Bob, the teen exclaimed: “It’s a horse!”

No, it was a magnificent Newfoundland dog, a breed originally raised as working dogs for fishermen in the Canadian province.

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