Avis Louise Foss Sinclair, my mother, was born on this day, March 8, in the year 1914.
Avis was the daughter of George P. and Stella Foss and grew up in Center Strafford, NH. She graduated from Austin Cate Academy – Center Strafford’s high school – in 1932. She played cello in the school orchestra and center for the girl’s basketball team. In 1936, she graduated from the Exeter (NH) Hospital Training School for Nurses, eventually becoming a Registered Nurse.
In May of 1941, she married Francis M. Sinclair, my father, in Exeter, NH.
My mom was very supportive of my musical endeavors, even in my junior high and early high school years when I played the drums. (I believe there should be a special place in heaven for the mothers of young rock & roll drummers.) When I became a guitarist, singer and songwriter, mom and dad would often come to my gigs, especially when I played on Sunday afternoons in the Fall at Applecrest Farms in Hampton Falls, NH.
One of my mother’s favorite songs of mine was “The Ladies of Fairburn.” It was a song I wrote after a trip I took to England in the summer of 1978. I recorded “The Ladies of Fairburn” in 1988 for my self-produced, cassette-tape album, Anytime.
Around that time, an AM radio station in Exeter started a weekend-mornings Folk music show with a DJ named Rick Parry. I’d listened to Rick throughout high school when he was on WBCN-FM, out of Boston. Rick was a big supporter of all of the Seacoast NH Folk musicians, readily giving them airplay and promoting up-coming gigs.
I told mom about the radio show and that they had a copy of Anytime and the DJ took requests from listeners. Well, that was all she needed to know. She started to call the station every weekend and request “The Ladies of Fairburn.” Rick always played it, even after he figured out who she was. This went on – I learned much later – for many months.
Avis Louise Foss Sinclair was 87 years old when she passed away on Sunday, August 5, 2001.
As she would always say, “God love you!”
If you would like to hear “The Ladies of Fairburn,” please go to the first “take” of this post: “This Historic Day… My Mother.”