'Tale of Two Schools'

To the Editor:

In response to the timely piece, "Erin Mayo Installed as Head of School" (Staff Report), alongside "Communities Converge for the 'Game'" (Article) by James Jardine (both on today's p. A1), I note the Staff Report does not refer to Bernier Mayo as the father of Erin Mayo, new Head of School at Fryeburg Academy in Maine incorporated in 1792, nor as Tom Lovett's predecessor over 1981 -- 2001 as Headmaster at St. Johnsbury Academy (SJA) during a transformative era of expansion in SJA's long history since its founding in 1842 by Erastus Fairbanks and others as documented by The Caledonian-Record established in 1837.

But this may be an appropriate time to make this connection clearer to the reading public.

Indeed, Tom Lovett is a kingpin connecting these news items, having addressed the audience in Fryeburg, Maine at Erin's installation ceremony there, then driving back to Vermont in time to take in the football 'Game' as evidenced by his smiling portrait photo on today's p.A6, with the gridiron scoreboard at Lyndon Institute (LI) in the background.

Unwittingly, then, Tom was honoring as well as supporting Bernier. Perhaps this could have been predicted from this year's Rivalry Magazine entitled "Turf War" for the 'Game' between SJA and LI, as there appears inside its front cover under the banner Go Toppers! Tom's listing of the three main values of SJA. Under no. 1, "Be the best person he/she can be," he writes: "We have compassion and empathy and we believe in loving those most who need it most."

Certainly, Bernier, now a resident and patient at the Pines in Lyndonville, is in great need of visits there and other support to help him and his family on a painful and slow recovery from lung surgery and then stroke last July at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H. All his many friends want him to function once again as a valued and boldly confident educational leader in the NEK, such as a "Headmaster Emeritus" member of the Board of Trustees of SJA as well as a frequent opinion writer for this newspaper and an ordained deacon in his church in St. J.

It would be appropriate if indeed the Academy did take a further lead in helping to marshal support for Bernier and his family such as through its Office of Alumni Relations and Development, as he graduated from SJA himself in 1956, per the Academy's yearbook The Lamp for that year.

Harold M. Frost III, Ph.D.

Sheffield, Vt.

Editor's note: We were remiss in failing to note in the article that Bernier Mayo is a former headmaster at St. Johnsbury Academy, but his relationship as father of Erin Mayo was stated in the opening paragraph.


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