Being the daughter of a retired Baltimore City firefighter, I can appreciate this story. Bill Howard has been a volunteer at the Owings Mills Volunteer Fire Company for 70 years! In his honor, the meeting room at the fire house was named for him recently.

Howard is 89 years young and was raised on a 300-acre farm right here in Owings Mills. He was a member of 4-H and wanted to go to agricultural school. World War II changed that dream, and he spent three years in the Navy.

On his return, it was back to the fire station to do what was in his blood — help others. He treats the volunteers at the fire house like his second family and visits there now several times a week.

Although he doesn't go out on fire calls anymore, he is able to help in other ways, and also to impart knowledge and experience to the rookies.


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Such dedication is almost unheard of these days, and Howard is to be commended and thanked for all of his years of service.

Attic treasures are always full of surprises and can take us back in time to a cherished moment. On Feb. 24 from 10:30 until 11:30 a.m., Frances Cockey will discuss her family's history and heritage in a presentation entitled "My Grandmother's Trunk."

And yes, the inspiration comes from articles that she found in that trunk. She looks forward to seeing everyone at the Reisterstown Senior Center at 12035 Reisterstown Road, at the Hannah More Center.

Theater lovers will be in their glory when the Gordon Center presents "My Mother's Italian, My Father's Jewish and I'm in Therapy!" Five shows are scheduled from March 7 through March 11, and tickets are $40 for weekdays and $45 for weekends. The Gordon Center is located on the campus of the Jewish Community Center at 3506 Gwynnbrook Ave. Tickets can be obtained by calling 410-547-SEAT or by visiting the box office (call 410-356-SHOW and press 4). The Gordon Center is a beautiful venue and has had some remarkable shows..

Some quick news about town. First, congratulations are offered to Owings Mills High School seniors Cara Mazor and Max Siskin for winning the Maryland Invitational Moot Court Championship. OMHS has consistently turned out students who achieve success in their academic field.

Our own local resident, Dr. Dan Morhaim, has authored a book called "The Better End" which deals with end-of-life issues.

Not a topic we like to think or talk about, but one that is quite necessary. The book offers insights that can help a family when these all-too-important issues need to be addressed.

There will be a book signing at Constellation Books on Main Street, Reisterstown, on April 28 at 3 p.m. Come meet Dr. Morhaim and also support a local business.

Speaking of businesses, a new one has opened in Owings Mills and was long-awaited and anticipated. The newest Olive Garden opened Jan. 23, with a line already formed and spilling into the parking lot.

General Manager Manny Mejias said Darden Restaurants chose to come to Owings Mills because it's an up-and-coming area, and that diners in the community were excited about the location. It is so nice to see the former Tony Roma building revitalized and thriving with a new business.

Another great neighborhood business is Chick-fil-a in Owings Mills Square, directly across from the fire station. This popular eatery always has a long line at the drive-through and a packed house inside.

To celebrate Valentine's Day, there will be a Family Valentine Breakfast on Saturday, Feb. 11, at 9:30 a.m. Be sure to ask about other events that are happening throughout the month.

Before ending this month, I must give a shout-out to Gail F. Ennis who had her 15 minutes of fame in the TV Guide. Gail wrote a note about Nancy O'Dell's ponytail and it made the Inbox page. This was the first time I have ever seen Owings Mills mentioned in the TV Guide. Our little town is now on the map!

Wishing everyone a Happy Valentine's Day and a special Happy Birthday to my hubby on Feb. 15. Next year is a big one!

It's also a leap year, so enjoy that extra day this month, and call with your special news.