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Published January 10 2014

Neighbors: Is there another word for synonym?

This column has dealt with a lot of major issues this year, from what to put on lefse to where the Galloping Goose branch line trains ran.

And then there was the question one reader asked, namely, is there another word for synonym?

Yes, in the opinion of Cindy Kopperud, Moorhead, who suggests “equivalency.”

At least, Cindy says, maybe that word is close to synonym.

World War II vets

On another note, an email comes from Dick Raatz, formerly of Verona, N.D., and Fargo, and now of Brooklyn Park, Minn., who writes, “I saw a report that said we World War II veterans are dying at the rate of 9,000 per day. I am curious to know how many of us are still alive.”

Neighbors won’t be able to answer Dick’s question. But it can report that Dick is one of those surviving vets because, he adds, “I am still feeling hale and hearty at age 91.”

Linda Lu

A popular local singer/yodeler featured here during the year was Dorothy (Venard) Fandrich, better known by her stage name of Linda Lu, who sang over at WDAY for many years.

Dorothy, now 89 and living in Moorhead, told her story here earlier this month, after several people inquired about her.

Here are notes from more of her fans.

Willis Stelter, Moorhead, writes that, “As a youth, I remember hearing her many times on the radio and seeing her perform with the Texas Ranger at the Wilkin County Fair in Breckenridge, Minn.

“Through several avenues,” Willis says, “I have known her (late) husband, Dan Fandrich, and his wife, Dorothy, for many years. It was only a few years ago that I became aware that Dorothy is the famous Linda Lu, and have kidded her about it.”

Former WDAY announcer Earl Williams, Fargo, writes that at one time Dorothy and Dan were regulars at the monthly WDAY alumni luncheon at the Fargo Holiday Inn.

“She once told me,” Earl writes, “that when she graduated from college, she was offered a job in northern Minnesota. She went to the placement bureau and asked if they could find her something closer to Fargo-Moorhead so she could continue to work at WDAY.

“She continued to work at WDAY for 22 years,” Earl says, “and will be remembered for her yodeling and as a singer who replaced Peggy Lee.”

Sylvia Likness, Wahpeton, N.D., writes, “I went to college at Moorhead State Teachers College (now Minnesota State University Moorhead) with Linda Lu. At that time, I knew her as Dorothy Venard.

“After graduation, we kept in touch, getting together once a year for dinner with two other couples who went to MSTC: Alton and Alice Peterson and Luther and Emily Skoglund. Alton is the son of Frances Peterson, the car dealer in Moorhead; Alton took over the business when his dad died.

“Only Alton, Dorothy, my husband, Carleton Likness, and I are left of the eight.”

Neighbors will have more messages from its mailbag to pass along in the coming year.

If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107; fax it to (701) 241-5487; or email blind@forumcomm.com