Dolores Howe Sparkplug Award.

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Club 873 is part of Area H-4, but when Dolores Howe was part of Club 873, the club belonged to Area E-4. One of the best years Area E-4 ever had was 1994-95. E-4 was a Select Distinguished Area that year. The Area Governor that year was Dolores Howe; a long time Member of Club 873. Dolores served as an Area Governor more than once. She was also a Division Governor one year (4-6 Areas make up a Division). She was active in at least five different clubs, and earned two Able Toastmaster-Silver Awards during her Toastmaster Experience. She also placed in several major Speech Competitions. It was sometime in 1996 (no one really knows the exact time), she got word from her Doctor that she had only a short time to live. Dolores then made a major decision as to what she was going to do with the short time she had left. She decided that she would be extremely active in putting the word out about Toastmasters International, and that is exactly what she did.

For the most part, that's all she did (except for taking care of "Billy Boy"--her pot bellied pig). During this time, she was serving as the Founder's District Parade Chair and she involved the district in at least 4 parades in LA and Orange Counties. One of these events included the Whittier Christmas Parade, which gave Toastmasters a lot of Cable TV Footage. I remember one night when I was talking to her on the phone about Club officers Training in the early part of 1997. What I didn't realize at that tme, was that that particular phone conversation would be the last time I would ever speak to her. Shortly later, the aneurysm in her brain burst. There was no pain, and she went very peacefully. I got a call from her Quaker Minister that Dolores Howe had passed on, and so I passed the news on to others in the district.

Many Toastmasters throughout the Founder's District attended her Memorial Service at the Friends Church in Whittier a few days later. Dolores Howe was 78 at the time of her death. To the Members of Club 873, Dolores Howe will always be a "Member at Heart" of The Dynamic Whittier Toastmasters.

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The Club's Sparkplug Award is named after Dolores Howe.

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--Bill Baxter, DTM.

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