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Ursula Gerhard –

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Ursula Gerhard, one-time resident of Massena for more than 30 years and later Waddington, NY, passed away peacefully December 17, 2016 in Manchester, New Hampshire. She was 92 years old. Born October 10, 1924, and growing up in Germany Ursula immigrated to Toronto, Canada with her husband Ernst K. Gerhard and their two daughters in 1955 and subsequently relocated to Massena, New York in 1963. During her time in Massena, Ursula worked as a substitute teacher, first at the Jefferson Middle School and then at the Madison Middle School. She demonstrated her athletic ability at Massena Central School by conducting a gymnastic routine on the parallel bars. Fresh air and exercise were important elements in Ursula s life and as a result she became active with the Clarkson Women s Hiking Group in Potsdam. They made many trips to her favorite mountains, the Adirondacks as they reminded her of the Alps. During the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid Ursula worked as a Pinkerton Security Guard at the entrance to the Olympic Village. It was here that she naturally befriended competing Athletes including Eric Heiden and several figure skaters. She returned to Massena with the US Hockey Team s autographed hockey sticks. It was the year they won the Gold Medal.

Several years after her husband, Ernst passed away, Ursula decided to return to Germany to be with friends and relatives. She was generous with her time and held poetry and story readings for the elderly and also for elementary school children. She enjoyed traveling throughout Europe and the Middle East visiting family, historic sites and churches. Her trips included a cruise from Norway to the North Pole where she rode in dog sleds, Christmas Markets in Germany and France, a trip to Bavaria, and a family vacation in Venice, Italy to celebrate her 80th birthday. She came to Waddington for summer visits and later returned to the United States in 20ll.

She is survived by her children; Anna Gerhard-Arnold and her husband, Guy of Waddington, Brigitte Gerhard of Rowland s Castle, UK and Christoph and Norine Gerhard with their two children, Gabriel and Grace of New Hampshire.

A Memorial Service for Ursula will be held at the United Methodist Church, on Route 37 in Waddington on Saturday, April 29th at 2:00pm

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Nigerian Navy flags off joint maritime security exercise with U.S. …

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The Nigerian Navy will on Thursday flag off a multinational maritime operation exercise christened Obangame Express . A statement signed by Suleman Dahun on behalf of the Chief of Naval Staff noted that the exercise is sponsored by the U.S. Africa Command and is aimed at improving regional cooperation, maritime domain awareness, information-sharing practices and tactical interdiction expertise. The exercise will also enhance the collective capabilities of the Gulf of Guinea and West African nations to counter sea-based illicit activity, Mr. Dahun, a Navy captain, said.

The Navy said Obangame Express will be conducted in phases within the territorial waters of the participating nations. The Nigerian phase of exercise is scheduled for March 24-28. Nigerian Navy Ship OKPABANA, Nigerian Navy Ship CENTENARY, Nigerian Navy Ship SAGBAMA and one helicopter will be participating in the Exercise along with a French Navy ship, JACOUBET.

The French ship will sail into the Nigerian waters from Cameroon, the Navy said. The ships will perform several exercises as will be presented by the exercise scenario.

Thirty nations are scheduled to participate in this year s exercise. They are Angola, Belgium, Benin, Brazil, Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Cote d Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Equatorial Guinea, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, and Guinea-Bissau. Others are: Liberia, Nigeria, Norway, Mauritania, Portugal, Republic of Congo, Sao Tome & Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, South Africa, Togo, Turkey, the Netherlands, and the United State.

Regional organisations including the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) are also scheduled to take part in the exercise. Participants at the drill will create realistic scenarios that reflect past piracy incidents whereby a hijacked vessel will transit from one territory to another, the statement said. Maritime Operations Centres (MOCs) during the exercise will be challenged to recognise these illicit acts appropriately and share with other MOCs.

Additionally, the game will test the ability of all the participating maritime forces to patrol their respective economic zones and detect and prosecute illegal activity accordingly, the statement said.

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