MOIRA — Arrive at Stewart’s Shop in Brushton any weekday at 4 a.m. and you will see a group of “old” friends having coffee and solving the world’s problems.
In that group will be Wayne Brockway, who has lived in the Town of Moira since he attended first grade at the local school.
His lifelong dedication to the town has earned him the designation of grand marshal of the 13th-annual Moira Heritage Day parade, set for Saturday, July 28.
“One of the nominating committee members submitted Wayne’s name, and after we thought about it, it seemed a natural choice,” said Janet Dana, Moira Historical Association founding member and Heritage Day Committee member.
Brockway said he’s pleased that they asked him to serve as grand marshal. He knows most of the townspeople and will enjoy seeing a lot of them during the day.
A lifetime member of the Moira Historical Association, he has first-hand memories of town history, among them watching the fire trucks from his family’s house just across the road from the Moira Volunteer Fire Department.
“I always wanted to be a member of that group,” he said. “Now I’ve been in the department 55 years and served as fire chief several times. I held every office except secretary, and I never wanted that office.”
WINDS THE CLOCK
Brockway remembers when pin-setting technology put him out of a job at the local bowling alley. He and his buddies used to get 10 cents a game to stand up the pins after the ball knocked them down.
More recent history brings back memories of the 1998 Ice Storm, during his 28-year tenure as highway superintendent. His job wasn’t only taking care of the roads, but checking on people who were stranded and sometimes rescuing them from homes without power. He has also served as a Town Council member and, at 75, operates his own business.
Perhaps his most unique “job,” is winding the old clock in the town square, a community landmark in a few different spots since 1928.
“Well, it’s supposed to be a seven-day clock, but it’s kind of old, so I wind it twice a week to make sure it keeps running on time,” he said.
Brockway’s early morning coffee appointments are a good way to start the day with friends Norm Laramie, George Guyette, Chuck McKane and John Perry.
“I always got up early when I was superintendent, and I just keep getting up early now,” he said. “After we solve the world’s problems at Stewart’s, then it’s on to Scotty’s Diner at 5 a.m. and, twice a week, the Grapevine in North Lawrence at 6.”
Asked what the greatest solution the group has come up with, Brockway laughed and said, “I don’t think you can print it, but we have decided Chuck should be president because he has all the answers.”