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Bob Lind, Published November 23 2010

Lind: Insuring charity at Galleria

The fire that hit the Galleria On 42nd apartment building in Fargo this past October left 150 renters homeless. Some lost everything.

One of them was a woman who had renters insurance at one time but had let it lapse.

Her insurance agent, Judy Duffy, with Far North Insurance, Fargo, tells what happened next.

“Another very good customer and nice lady, Betsy Demarais of Fargo, called me,” Judy says, “and asked if I knew anyone who lived in the apartment building and had no insurance.

“I told her I did, and she offered to pay for the insurance for one year as long as the other gal would tell others how important it was to have insurance.

“My insured was speechless that someone would do this for her.”

Judy says she’s not telling this story to preach about insurance. She just thinks that along with the many reports of kind people donating clothing, furniture and money to the renters hit by the fire, this story should be told, too.

Betsy wasn’t seeking publicity. But here’s public acknowledgement to her anyhow for doing something special for someone she doesn’t know but now has something extra to give thanks for this Thanksgiving because of her.

Fargo streetcars

Neighbors has much to be thankful for, including the many folks who contribute to this column and who supply answers for people who have questions.

Case in point: A story about Fargo’s streetcars years ago led Al Schneiter of Fargo to ask who ran those cars.

Maurice Pederson of Valley City, N.D., has the answer: the Northern States Power Co.

Maurice knows because his father worked for the NSP gas plant in Fargo.

Lem, V-belts, cows

People also know about local radio personalities out of the past like Lem Hawkins.

Terry Olson of Fargo writes that one of Lem’s commercials was for Gates V-belt drives.

“He claimed that the V-belt drive on a tandem truck would go through anything,” Terry says.

“We always assumed the ads addressed the eastern North Dakota beet and potato farmers, as they were the only ones using tandems at that time.

“Lem’s station and he were always on in the barn,” Terry says, adding that “Holstein cows liked him, too, I guess.”

If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107; fax it to 241-5487; or e-mail blind@forumcomm.com