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Library Book Sparks Lifetime of Love

heart_bookIn 1940, high school students, Linda Porte and Woodland Drake, were introduced by mutual friends during a study session at the Millicent Library in Fairhaven, MA. As the library was closing Linda became upset that she would not be able to finish her report. The book she needed, a guide to Fairhaven, was a reference book and could not be checked out. During the group’s walk home, she again expressed her disappointment at not having the book, and Woodland surprised her by pulling it out of his jacket. This act of “unofficial borrowing” would spark a lifetime of love, with a marriage that lasted 64 years and four children. Their son, Paul Drake, himself a librarian at the University of Guam, recently recounted his parent’s love story to the Standard-Times. Incredibly the couple had held on to the book for the rest of their lives, but after they both passed away (Linda in 2007 and Woodland in 2009), Paul felt it was time to finally return it to its rightful owner.

“…I realized that the story was an important part of my parents’ lives, and I was then willing to share that story with Carolyn Longworth [Millicent Library Director],” said Paul. Longworth was surprised at the return of book, but appreciated the significance it had to Paul’s family. Paul has been a strong supporter of the library, and made donations in his father’s name for the past two years. “Libraries are hard hit by budget cuts. I just wanted to make a small repayment to the Millicent Library for its contributions to my life,” he explained.

Read Standard-Times article

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