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Joan VanScoy to Receive E.C. Purdy Award

NORTH SALEM, N.Y. - On Friday, October 28, the North Salem Republican Committee will present the Elbert Caldwell Purdy Community Service Award to octogenarian, Joan VanScoy.

“I’m amazed," said Mrs. VanScoy when she heard about it. “I’m just an ordinary person.”

In her role of “ordinary person,” Mrs. VanScoy has been a trustee of the Historical Society, first vice president of the North Salem Seniors Club and supervisor of the Hudson Valley Teachers Credit Union. She drives the seniors to the voting booths on election day, has baked for BOCES, for the Hammond Museum school trips, and for her church. She has been active in the O.P.T.I.O.N.S. Program at the high school, North Salem F.I.S.H., and has been cashier for various organizations, including the North Salem Lions Club .

“I am good with money,” she said, “because I grew up in England when we were still dealing with pounds and crowns and shillings and farthings and sovereigns. Dollars and cents seemed very easy after that.”

Mrs. VanScoy came to America as a war bride in 1946. She and her husband moved to North Salem in 1951. She still lives in the same house. Ten years later, her husband died unexpectedly, but she stayed on to raise her sons and eventually became a U. S. citizen.

“You meet nice people when you volunteer. It kept me busy and occupied. It made my life better,” she said.

Elbert Caldwell Purdy was an extremely active community member for nearly 60 years. A volunteer fireman, member of the Chamber of Commerce, Board of Education trustee, Library Planning Committee, and treasurer of the local Red Cross, he was also the deacon, treasurer and organist of the Croton Falls Baptist Church.

Reverend Lucia Ballantine, Rector of St. James Episcopal Church , will deliver the invocation at the ceremony honoring Mrs. VanScoy and will speak about the stained glass window at St. James’s, which Mrs. VanScoy donated in honor of her family.

The celebratory dinner will be held on October 28 at the Salem Golf Club on Bloomer Road in North Salem. Cocktails at 7 p.m., Dinner at 8 p.m.

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