By Valerie Fraling, Special to the AFRO

“I believe in liberty for all men; the space to stretch their arms and their souls, the right to breathe and the right to vote, the freedom to choose their friends, enjoy the sunshine, and ride on the railroads, uncursed by color; thinking, dreaming, working as they will in a kingdom of beauty and love.” W.E.B. DuBois

The DuBois Circle hosted it’s 113th closing meeting at The Forum Caterers with more than two hundred guests in attendance. This year’s theme “Who is mentoring our males” and the guest speaker was Dr. Everett Ward International president of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated.

“But what of black women?… I most sincerely doubt if any other race of women could have brought its fineness up through so devilish a fire.” W.E.B. DuBois

Members of this illustrious DuBois Circle are Dr. Clara Adams, Dorothy Bascom, Leona Carpenter, my host Beverly Carter, Esq. Carolyn Cole, Beverly Cooper, Cheree Davis, Dr. Shirley Evans, Evelyn France, Helena Hairston, Marilyn Harris-Davis, Patricia Jessamy,Esq., Dr. Ida Jones, Yvonne Lansey, Nannette Mitchell, Alice Pinderhughes, Esq., Idell Pugh, Margaret Shipley, Dr. Judith Smith, Rosalie Turpin-Belcher, Dr. Patricia Welch, The Rev. Canon Dr. Sandye Wilson, Dr. Maxine Wood and Dr. Edmonia Yates. Dr. Yolande DuBois Irvin is an honorary member.

“And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter and sharing and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” Kahlil Gibran

Gloria Tuttie Bogans and I laughed together on Preakness Saturday night. Instead of going to Preakness as I’ve done for thirty plus years, I decided to visit Tuttie and Peck in their Mt. Winans home and watch Preakness with them. On Sunday, Tuttie and I texted back and forth as girlfriends do with our final text going like this. I sent her a meme showing love being showered on her from me, her response “appreciated and reciprocated.” That’s the last time we communicated.

“Some bright morning when this life is over, I’ll fly away” Johnny Cash

On Monday afternoon my beloved friend Tuttie quietly flew away to her heavenly home while sitting in the comfort of her earthly home with her husband of 58 years James Peck Bogans at her side, watching her favorite westerns.

We don’t know why we do the things we do. What we do know is that God in his infinite wisdom directs our path in the way we do the things we do. I thank God for placing Tuttie and her family in my life. Real friendship is rare it creates a bond that is communicated by action thought and deed. It comes when it’s least expected and is blessed by God. Sleep well my friend and sister, your friendship and love were “appreciated and reciprocated.”

Keeping Linda Smithwick and family in our prayers as they prepare the memorial service for her mother Clarice McIntosh, on June 8th at Macedonia Baptist Church at 12 noon.

“Up on the roof” Drifters

Do you remember the Peabody Hotel on Cathedral Street and the rooftop lounge? We would sip champagne and overlook the city and George Washington, holding court in Mt. Vernon square. It has been renovated and was a great place to celebrate Jackie Washington’s birthday on Black Eye Susan Friday. We took the elevator to the Revival Rooftop restaurant to a magnificent sunset for dinner and drinks. People in attendance were the honorable councilwoman Paula Johnson Branch, Alice Pinderhughes, Zoey Washington Sheff, Jasmine Richardson, DeLace Burch, Kuren and Jason Morgan, John-John Williams, Michelle Bailey-Hedgepeth, Cathy Dorsey and Jackie’s mom Dr. Marie Washington.

Family and friends joined Gustavo King and Joe Zammeralla at their attractive Coldspring Newtown home to celebrate Gustavo’s 60th birthday. These two know how to party and each celebration is a spectacular event featuring various themes.

Happy birthday to Governor Larry Hogan, Dr. Anne Emery, Laverne Naesea, Danielle Hill, McNair “Mickey” Taylor, Delle Henson Stacey Duncan Grace and Dr. Marie Washington. A special birthday shout out to 13 year old Shelby Thomas an official teenager.

“Give me my flowers while I yet Live” James Cleveland

In honor of the GEMS 40th anniversary they honored their emeritus members at a luncheon at Doubletree Hilton in Pikesville. Those honored were Mildred Taylor, Juanita Morton, Dr. Helena Hicks, Dr. Anne Emery and Yvonne Leacock. Emeritus members not in attendance were LaMoyne Cooper and Cynthia Askew.

“The Graduate” Kelcey Victoria Oliver was feted on Saturday afternoon at a champagne reception in honor of her graduation from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore on Friday at the home of her grandparents Albert and Myra Owens Queen. On Sunday more than 150 guests joined Kelcey, her grandparents, mom Stacy Queen and her dad Kelvin Oliver at Forest Park Golf Course for her official party with DJ TNT and food catered by Ms. Judy Williams. The clubhouse was decorated in silver, white and black. Guests who travelled from Richmond, Virginia were Nathaniel and Marvis Jones, great grandparents, grandmother Mildred Oliver, Mario and Yolanda Haskett and family, John and Doretha McKinney and family, Otis and Machel Jones and family and Geraldine Nickens and family and Rachel Oliver from Chicago Illinois and Carolyn Lumpkins and Letticia Lumpkins from Pittsboro North Carolina. The surprise of the evening was Kelcey great grandparents who she did not know were coming. Other guests attending were graduates from UMES, Kelcey’s childhood friends, Brenda Sykes, Sherry Jackson, Jackie Richardson and Carolyn “Nita” Clopton.

The guests enjoyed a delicious menu of baked and fried chicken, macaroni and cheese string beans, saffron rice, Swedish meatballs and more. The delicious cake was from the French bakery Patisserie Poupon Bakery and specially requested cake pops decorated in UMES school colors.

What’s Happening!

Recess Cabaret Summer Bash on June 14 from 9 PM to 2AM at Patapsco Arena for tickets contact Everett “Doc” Garnett 443-641-7375.