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Daughter Fulfills Burning Desire to Be Like Mother

--A woman who became a firefighter because her husband thought women couldn’t do the job has welcomed her daughter to the force, creating the first mother-daughter team in the history of the Atlanta Fire Bureau. Tina Hix, 19, was sworn in as a firefighter along with 25 other candidates. She received her diploma from her mother, firefighter Rebecca Hix. Her younger sister, Toni, 18, was also on hand. Toni works as a dispatcher in the Fire Bureau’s communications section. “This is the first time in the Fire Bureau’s history . . . that we’ve had a family of firefighters,” said Fire Chief William Hamer. Rebecca Hix started the family firefighting tradition in 1980. She made up her mind, she said, when her husband, Morris, told her, “Women can’t do that.” “That was just like waving a red flag in my face,” she said. And why did daughter Tina join? “I said, ‘Well, if Mom can do it, I can do it,’ ” Tina said. The Atlanta Fire Bureau accepted its first woman firefighter in 1977. As of last month, 17 of its 943 firefighters were women.

--Kayaks collapsed and canoes turned to mush, but Roger Brummett persevered, paddling around and through the debris to win his seventh consecutive Cardboard Boat Regatta at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Ill. “This year was tough,” the Odin High School industrial arts teacher said, panting as he climbed gingerly out of his kayak. Brummett, 33, defeated Charles Keehn of Broadview in the oar-powered division of the 13th annual regatta of boats of all sizes, shapes and colors. A team of engineering students won the paddle boat division. All of the 150 entries were made of cardboard, and many failed to stay afloat past the first turn on the 200-yard triangular course at SIU’s Campus Lake. How do you know when you face catastrophe? “You know you’re in trouble when your armpits are wet,” regatta organizer Richard Archer told an estimated crowd of 15,000 lining the shore.

--A new hands-on exhibit in New York gives people a chance to feel the famous. The exhibit at The Lighthouse, a private enterprise that helps the blind, features the work of artist Willa Shalit, the daughter of movie critic Gene Shalit. The artist uses a plaster technique to recreate the famous, taking the casts from the subjects’ faces. Among those on display are President Reagan, Richard M. Nixon, Sophia Loren, Paul Newman, Whoopi Goldberg, Robin Williams, Glenn Close, Carly Simon and Isaac Stern. Also on display are Muhammad Ali’s fist and dancer Natalia Makarova’s right leg.


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