The Way We Were

The Way We Were: Rita Danese Taylor

The Way We Were: Rita Danese Taylor

On May 4, 2022, Rita Danese Taylor turned 100. For decades, it has been her habit to spend the entire month celebrating her birthday, and this year was no different. In late May, 180 guests gathered at Prince of Peace Parish Hall on Bennett Road for a party. A dozen people had travelled from various […]

The Way We Were: Deanna and Mike Lissner

The Way We Were: Deanna and Mike Lissner

Deanna and Mike Lissner are a Jacksonville couple who believe strongly in giving back from the bounty they’ve been blessed with. For decades, they’ve been devoting their time, talent, and treasure to their beloved Jewish community and beyond. They’ve gone from being high school sweethearts to 62 years married. They’ve brought forth children and grandchildren, […]

The Way We Were: Dottie S. Dorion

The Way We Were: Dottie S. Dorion

Dottie Dorion is a Long Island native, born Dorothy Simpson in Floral Park, New York in 1934, but she has lived in Jacksonville for over five decades. She came here in 1971 from Puerto Rico so that her husband, George, could build a laboratory for his family’s company, Bacardi. Prior to their stint in Puerto […]

The Way We Were: Jack Lanier

The Way We Were: Jack Lanier

Jack Lanier arrived in Jacksonville in a stranger’s truck more than eight decades ago. He became known as an inventor and a collector. He is a ceaseless worker, a self-made man. Most extraordinary of all is that he will turn 100 this month! Lanier was born on June 15, 1922 in Matter County, Georgia where […]

The Way We Were: Clayton M. Spradley

The Way We Were: Clayton M. Spradley

A man with Riverside roots. A former football star. A retired veteran with officer’s rank. Over four decades in various areas of law enforcement. A published author. An 82-year-old mind that remembers the exact addresses of places he’s lived, which he admits “is amazing!” This is Clayton M. Spradley of Orange Park. Spradley was born […]

The Way We Were: Winslow Ira Colbert

The Way We Were: Winslow Ira Colbert

Winslow Ira Colbert of Ortega got her first boat, a wooden Curley boat with a 35mph motor, when she was fourteen years old. Her dad would launch it for her in the morning and the self- described “river rat” cruised up and down McGirt’s Creek, Moon Lake and the St. Johns River to Timuquana Country […]

The Way We Were: Fred Woolsey

The Way We Were: Fred Woolsey

Fred Woolsey is a Jacksonville native. His family lived on Green Street in West Riverside when he was born on February 22, 1936 to Dr. and Mrs. Fred and Helen Woolsey. A year later, he became big brother to Mary. Next door lived the Walton family of five. They had a son, Bob, who was […]

The Way We Were: Agnes Stack

The Way We Were: Agnes Stack

Born in Ohio in 1935, the youngest of 11 children, Agnes Stack was the only one among her six sisters and four brothers who had any musical talent. When she was 4 years old, she made herself a cornstalk fiddle, sat on the back porch, and began singing “Going Down the Road Feeling Bad,” a […]

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