The Way We Were

The Way We Were: Norman Abraham

The Way We Were: Norman Abraham

He has fed mayors, council members, judges, salesmen, construction workers, doctors, hospital workers, bankers, firefighters, policemen, and retirees. When invited to speak at Rotary meetings about his business experience, it’s rarely possible to find a room with a single person who has not been a patron of at least one of his eateries. He is […]

The Way We Were: Anne Coyle

The Way We Were: Anne Coyle

Anne Coyle recognizes the difficulties of today’s COVID crisis, “but it is nothing compared to 1918. That was a time of war and a time of flu,” she said of what occurred more than 100 years ago.  The Spanish flu pandemic during WWI hit her mother’s family hard. Coyle’s mother was the eldest of eight […]

The Way We Were: Joe and Joni Bifano

The Way We Were: Joe and Joni Bifano

When it comes to true love, the third time is the charm, the saying goes. And that’s how it was for Joseph James Bifano. As a young man working in his hometown of Sheboygan, Wis., on the second floor of J. C. Penney in the boys’ department, there were at least two occasions when his […]

The Way We Were: Sissy Barker

The Way We Were: Sissy Barker

It’s quite the paradox, but amid multiple moves across state lines, Sissy Barker has maintained throughout Jacksonville a consistency in friendships and family, which marks the theme of her life. Born to Sara and Paul Hattaway on Thanksgiving Day 1936 in Augusta, Georgia, Sissy Barker’s real name was Cynthann. She was named for her father’s […]

The Way We Were: Cyndy Ira Reynolds

The Way We Were: Cyndy Ira Reynolds

A value system instilled by her family and the loyalty of lifelong friends are what have shaped and molded Cyndy Ira Reynolds of Avondale. “I feel like a mixture of so many bright and intuitive and lovely people,” she said. Reynolds is the daughter of Dr. Gordon H. Ira, Jr., the Jacksonville native who had […]

The Way We Were: Carol Cochran Todd

The Way We Were: Carol Cochran Todd

Carol Cochran Todd has seen over seven decades of change across Jacksonville. But there’s been at least one constant thread woven into the fabric of her life here, and that is respect—the respect she witnessed as a little girl, the respect she was taught in school, the respect she holds today for all people.  Originally […]

The Way We Were: Ken Juro

The Way We Were: Ken Juro

Even though he was not born when his father fought the Japanese during World War II, Ken Juro learned plenty about resilience and conscientiousness from his father’s tales about his wartime experience. Juro, an Empire Point resident who has longtime ties to Ortega, grew up in Spring Park in the 1950s and often worked in […]

The Way We Were: Dr. William Cordell Mason III

The Way We Were: Dr. William Cordell Mason III

Reflecting on a 50-year career filled with medicine and ministry Reflecting on his 50 years as a hospital administrator for Baptist hospitals worldwide, Bill Mason realized his career was the perfect mix of medicine and ministry. The San Marco resident has held leadership positions at Baptist Health in Jacksonville for 40+ years, from 1978 until […]

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