March  2004

Dear Shelter


Bringing Back Memories
If I may quote an old vaudevillian actor Bob Hope, “Thanks for the memories.” 

Brian Welsh’s story “The Elder ‘Yard’ Man” (published in the November/December 2003 issue of SHELTER on page 4), if tailored just a little, would fit my brother to a “T” (square), like a dovetail joint or tongue-and-grove sheathing. 

The invisible man described in Brian’s story has hung around a lumber yard since he was 8 years old and has worked in a lumber yard almost forty years. 

I am one of nine children. My brothers, sisters and I, at one point in our lives, all worked for Kirley Lumber Co. in Dorchester, Mass., until it closed. 

Today my brother, Kevin Livingston, has continued to work around lumber in various capacities, but always out in the elements. 

There isn’t a thing any one of his siblings, nor his wife and children, could do to get him to change jobs. It is impossible to get him to even slow down in what he does for Doherty, Blacker and Shepard Lumber in Roslindale, Mass.

Quite a few of us have read Brian’s story and must share with you the tears of joy it brought to our eyes. It was so uncanny the similarities between Brian’s black mustang and Kevin’s black cougar as well as building forts or club houses between the three-story-high stacks of 2x8x4 30-foot-long sheathing when just teenagers. 

Brian’s two boys and Kevin’s three girls have shared similar experiences at the lumber yard. 

Any one of the more than 80 extended members of my family would think that he had written a biography of Kevin.
I also have a nephew, Thomas, who has followed another path in the world of lumber as a door and window regional salesman. Whether a toothpick or timber, the life of a lumberman coarses through their veins.

To the unsuspecting observer, it is hard work, but to a true lumberjack, it is innate and comes easily. 
Richard Livingston
Milton, Mass.
Right On Target

Brian’s article, “The Elder ‘Yard’ Man,” says it the way it is.
Sean T. Moran, manager
Dykes Lumber Co. Inc.
Brooklyn, New York 

SHELTER Is Just the Right Size
I really enjoyed publisher Brian Welsh’s column, “Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way,” in the September 2003 issue of SHELTER on page 4. 

It’s given me more motivation already. Everything he said really rings true. And these days are truly full of change. Keep up the great commentary.

I always try to check out SHELTER. It’s always been the easiest to pick up and thumb through; it’s just the right size.
Joel B. Miller
Owner/General Manager
The Millwork Store
Williamsport, Md 


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