2011 Review: Retirements

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Galvin Middle School Principal Tom LaLiberte walks out of school for a dedication ceremony on June 6. (Amy Nachbar photo)

Paul Close retired from the Canton Fire Department in January after 32 years of service. Paul is the husband of Andrea Close, author of the long-running Canton Citizen recipe column “Close Encounters.”

Barry Ronayne and Jim Podgurski, both lifelong residents, retired from the Canton Fire Department at the end of May. Ronayne started in 1974 and served the department for 37 years, attaining the rank of lieutenant. Podgurski began as a call firefighter and went on to serve the department for 40 years.

Israel “Izzie” Geller retired from his post as a Luce School crossing guard in June after ten years of service. A native of Poland, Geller spent six years of his youth in various Nazi concentration camps and Jewish ghettos until he was liberated by American soldiers in the spring of 1945. He was recently recognized as Canton’s top crossing guard by Police Chief Ken Berkowitz during a gathering of law enforcement officials at the Bank of Canton.

Evi Nubar, a popular teacher at the Blue Hill Montessori School in Canton, retired in June after 33 years of service.

Joyce Mahn, a second grade teacher at the Luce school, retired in June after 24 years. Mahn helped create a butterfly garden at the school in 1999. She previously taught at elementary schools in Texas, Illinois, Missouri and Mississippi.

Tom LaLiberte, a longtime educator and school administrator, retired at the end of June after 10 years as principal of the Galvin Middle School. He also served for many years as assistant principal at Duxbury Middle School and later as principal at Hanover Middle School.

Jerry Frank, a longtime cameraman for Canton Community Television (Cable 8), retired in December after 27 years of covering weekend events and government meetings. Frank received a surprise commendation from the Zoning Board of Appeals after the taping of his final ZBA meeting on December 15.

Mary Ellen Hudner stepped down from her volunteer post as co-director of the Canton Food Pantry in December. For six years, Hudner manned the food pantry every Wednesday and also made regular shopping trips to the Greater Boston Food Bank.

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