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Remembering Ed Vebell

Editor’s note: Ed Vebell died Friday night at the age of 96.  Below is a profile of him published by WestportNow in 2016.

By James Lomuscio

Click HERE for a 2013 video interview with Vebell

The setting seemed cinematic, fictitious even—a worldly, wizened 95-year-old keeping two 18-year olds rapt and continually amazed, so much so that they would keep coming back to hear more.

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Ed Vebell: at 24, he drew Nazis at Nuremberg while thinking of his Paris girlfriend. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

But that was the scene last week at the Compo Beach area home of legendary illustrator-photographer Ed Vebell as he hosted the teens—Wellington Baumann, a 2016 Staples High School graduate, and Aren Heitmann, a recent Fairfield Ludlowe High School graduate.

Baumann and Heitmann, history buffs who will attend Gettysburg College in the fall, are interning with Vebell for the summer in his loft studio. They seemed a good fit.

After all, Vebell, a World War II Army sergeant, was the key artist in Europe and North Africa for Stars & Stripes, the American newspaper reporting on matters affecting the U.S. Armed Forces. He was also the only artist allowed to cover the 1945, post-war Nuremberg, Germany war trials, which prosecuted members of the Nazi leadership.

Ed Vebell, Renowned Illustrator, 96

UPDATE Ed Vebell, the pen and ink adventurer, World War II cavalryman, the only illustrator at the Nuremberg trials, Olympic fencer and prolific artist for national magazines, died Friday night at his Westport home. He was 96.

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(CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ed Vebell: After exhibit opening he said he “could go.” Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

“My father Ed Vebell passed away peacefully last night at home,” his daughter Andra Vebell said.

Born May 25, 1921 in Chicago, Vebell lived in the same Quentin Road home he and his late wife Elsa had purchased in 1953.

“He’d had congestive heart failure for some time now but was determined to make it to his show at the Historical Society,” the daughter said. “After that, he said he could go.”

Saturday, February 10, 2018


10 a.m. – 2 p.m. – Gilbertie’s (7 Sylvan Lane) – Westport Winter Farmers Market
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Westport Arts Center – “What Keeps Mankind Alive/The Last Library”
2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m. – Westport Country Playhouse – “Evita” (last day)
2:30 p.m. – Westport Library – HTC Vive Virtual Reality Demo
2:30 p.m. – Westport Library – WestportREADS 2018 Family Program: Create Your Own “Dazzle Ship”
4 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – WestportREADS 2018/Westport Cinema Initiative: “Letters from Baghdad”
7 p.m. – Westport Woman’s Club (44 Imperial Ave.) – Benefit concert & dance: DNR
8 p.m. – Town Hall – Westport Community Theatre: “Annapurna”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

BOE Lunch: Helping Students in the Middle

By Jarret Liotta

The needs, trials and success of the average Westport student were discussed today at the Board of Education’s brown bag lunch.

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Superintendent Collen Palmer address today’s luncheon meeting as other board members listen. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jarret Liotta for WestportNow.com

Close to 50 parents were in Town Hall Auditorium for a one-hour Q&A that included comments on the intrinsic pressures many midrange students face in a high-performance district.

“When a teacher tells me that in a high school for a 15-year old he is teaching a college-level course,” parent Peter Hein said, it’s a red flag.

“If you are giving this impression to students,” he said, noting a sometimes-pressurized climate for achievement at Staples, students in the middle will already feel insecure and at a disadvantage.

Republicans Seek to Fill ZBA Vacancy

The Westport Republican Town Committee (RTC) is accepting applications to fill vacancy on the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), it was announced today.

Bill Harris, who has served on the ZBA since November 2007, recently stepped down.

Registered Westport Republicans interested in the position or serving as a ZBA alternate can contact RTC Chairman Tim Wetmore at (203) 650-8463 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), providing a letter of interest and a resume to be received no later than noon Friday, Feb. 16.

The RTC’s Zoning Board of Appeals Vacancy Committee will interview qualified candidates and make a recommendation to the ZBA, the announcement said.

Budget Deal Has Plenty for Connecticut

By Ana Radelat

www.ctmirror.org

Washington — In rare bipartisan agreement, Congress today approved a massive budget deal that will increase federal spending in Connecticut, providing big boosts for the state’s defense industry and health care programs and even helping schools educate displaced students from Puerto Rico.

The budget deal increases both military and domestic spending.

It will raise defense spending to $700 billion for 2018 and $716 billion for 2019, increasing the number of F-35s the Pentagon will buy this year to about 90 and boosting money for the new Columbia ballistic missile submarine and the Virginia-class attack sub, which are both built by Electric Boat.

The budget deal also is expected to increase the number of Sikorsky-made helicopters the military will buy this year and next.

Tidal Gauge Will Remain After All

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The Westport Office of Emergency Management today announced a partnership with the Westport Downtown Merchants Association to continue funding of the tidal gauge for the Saugatuck River on the Ruth Steinkraus Cohen Bridge in Westport’s center. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) installed the gauge in 2014 as part of its tide gauge and storm surge-monitoring network for coastal Connecticut. The USGS had announced that data collection would be discontinued on Dec. 31 due to funding reductions from partner agencies. Checking out the gauge were Fire Chief Rob Yost, who also serves as the emergency management director, Public Works Director Pete Ratkiewich, and USGS technician Nigel Pepin. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Westport Fire Department photo

Westport Property Transfers Jan 22 – 26, 2018

Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period Jan. 22 - 26, 2018:

Diane Storey to Lucy R. Molina, 242 Bayberry Lane, $697,075WNproperty.jpg

Jeffrey and Michelle Boccuzzi to Andre and Megan Michaud, 3 Hogan Trail, $732,500.

Wells Fargo Bank NA-Trust to SAJ Properties LLC, 10 Warnock Drive, $489,000

Nathale Laitmon to Tanya A. Lapinski Trust, 100 Compo Road South, $1,869,500

Taking the ALS Pepper Challenge

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Members of the Westport Sunrise Rotary Club today took the hot pepper challenge at its weekly meeting. Funds raised will go for research into amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Patty Haberstroh, a friend of the club and the wife of longtime member Charles Haberstroh was diagnosed last May with this incurable disease. Karen Kleine, Board of Education member, was among those taking the challenge. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Friday, February 9, 2018


8:30 a.m. – Westport Library – Board of Finance
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Westport Historical Society – “The Curious Case of Ed Vebell”
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Westport Arts Center – “What Keeps Mankind Alive/The Last Library”
11 a.m. – Westport Library – Anyone Can Use … Etsy
Noon – Town Hall Auditorium – Board of Education Brown Bag Meeting
3 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Westport Library – Drop-in Tech Help
8 p.m. – Westport Country Playhouse – “Evita”
8 p.m. – Town Hall – Westport Community Theatre: “Annapurna”

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar