do you remember

May 5, 2012

This story below was told by Roy Freake on his birthday (March 29 ) and he asked if anyone in our group could top his tale of the day that he was born. Here's what Roy had to say and others adding to it.

Here's Roy's report:

For those of you who are aware of my birthday today (March 29, 2012), let me give you a few words on how my life started out.

Believe me it was far different to what you and your Mother(s) went through at your birth(s)... 
At age 16, my Mother was packed into a Komatic (dog sled) with a hundred blankets (lol) wrapped around her to protect her/me from N D Bay's cruel elements and dangerously rotten ice.. At age 19, my Dad drove that team of six dogs over the ice to a Midwife that was 20 miles away from my home (Boyd's Cove). The Bay ice was so bad and dangerous that a Horse & Sleigh could not be used, thus the Dog team.

Some stories say that I almost came forth on the Komatic...(but I do not remember for sure).
Ten days later, on Apr 7th, that same dog team & Komatic was used by Dad to return my Mother & I back home to Boyd's Cove over the same treacherous Northern ice.

At the half-way mark on the return journey home, a stop was made at a Logger's camp in a place called "Star Cove" so that a fire could be made in an old 45 gal drum to warm up a bottle for me, to stop me from my screaming blue-murder.!! That was my very first "mug-up" in the NL woods that I can remember.... No wonder that the NL Woods/Outdoors seem so much like home to me for past (70) years of my life....and still is....
If any of you can top this birth-story...go ahead, I would love to read/hear it.

And this postscript from Roy:

"The joy of it all is that I still have both parents with me. They both celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary on Jan 1st 2012…" Roy Freake, GA Class of 1960


A fabulous story. We need more like this on the webpage. Thanks to Roy for sharing it. Jim Butler, GA Class of 1959


Roy - this reads like a story for CBC, for one of their programs. Have you considered sharing it? I am curious - where did the midwife live? Marion Pardy, GA Class of 1958


Good story. I've spent some time in the woods with Roy when in high brother Will more so… I usually went along.

If you have an e-mail address for Roy that you could share, I'd love to touch base with him and remind him of a few 'woods' stories. Angus Taylor, GA Class of 1963


Great stories. I could never top Roy Freake's birth story. Audrey Mingo Grantham, GA Class of 1958


Bob Pelley told me once that he was born during one of the worst thunderstorms to hit Bonavista at the time. He had also made some reference to Hitler when recalling that birthdate on April 14, 1945:


"Ref the Hitler thing, he committed suicide 2 weeks after my birth. We figure that was about how long it would take for news to travel to Germany back at the end of the war. So the hypothesis is that as soon as he found out I was on the way, he knew then and there that the game was over and blew his brains out!" Robert Pelley, GA Class of 1962

And to conclude this little discussion, we'll top it off with a wonderful birthday party pix from Neil Bishop. It was his sister June's birthday party and Neil says this photo was taken by his dad, Cecil Bishop.

Neil identifies some of those in the picture (left to right)

"first one I'm not sure, Maureen Milley, brother Brian, sister June, Gail Cooper, Muriel Wilcox, Yvonne Cooper -- girl in the foreground in the sweater, not sure." Neil Bishop, GC Class of 1966


The little girl to the right of June is Gail Cooper (don't remember her married name), next is Muriel (Wilcox) Moorcroft and the girl with the long curls is Gail's sister Yvonne (Cooper) Lush. I don't know the other children. Elizabeth (Betty) (Luther) Bursey, HMA Class of 1953


No trouble to tell which one is June...(Bishop). Keith Lacey, GC Class of 1964


What a gorgeous little girl. And everyone was obviously having a grand time at the birthday party. Where does she live now. Michal Millar Crowe, GA Class of 1960


Thanks everyone for adding your thoughts to these stories. Appreciate all of the input…and Roy Freake joining in on our conversations here as well. Any errors or omissions, please contact me: Faye Lewis Raynard, GA Class of 1959. My email is

As always, thanks to the webster, for his polishing and posting of our materials.


back button