VOK: 1.12

January 12, 2016

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“I’m a quarter Native American, I’m a member of a tribe and everything and I feel like I have a deep connection to that native heritage. Its affected me my entire life. I’ve been insecure about my skin color for years, you know? And when people look at me, they don’t think that I’m native. I’m actually like a quarter native, a quarter Latino, and then half Italian, so I mean I’m not all that white, I just look it. And when I say that, for example… somebody looked at me and said, ‘oh you sound like one of those people that claims to be Native American when they’re only like 1/38th,’ and I’m like, I just looked at him. It was offensive, it was highly offensive… it’s those little aggressive comments that they don’t even realize are aggressive.”

– Elia Taffa, senior

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“He comes down almost every day. He’s been coming down since he was eight weeks old. I started bringing him down here to get him acclimated to the noise and the people. He loves it. He loves people. He’s a leaner, like most [Golden Retrievers] are. The other day there was a group of senior citizens going on a tour, and they came in. I turned [Baron] loose for a second and about fifty of them had him cornered over there [in the train station]. It’s the the fact that so many people are attracted to the dog, just to touch, and hug, and pet, and to talk about their dogs… he’s really just a friend on the platform.”

– Bill Burckhalter and Baron the Golden Retriever

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“I love it here, it’s very nice, and I like waking around the lake, I usually do it three times a day. Count the ducks as I walk by. I got up to 27 one day. Sometimes I only see four or five.”

Have you noticed the sense of community in Kirkwood?

“To me it’s a very friendly neighborhood. I like a small town rather than a big city. Good neighbors, good people. I like the stores, I like the restaurants. I’m happy here.”

– Joe Scanlon

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