Dedication to our founder
The founder of the Harvey Lake Watershed Association was Doris R. Entwisle.
Doris died on Nov. 12, 2013, from cancer, and she will be missed by many people here at Harvey Lake. Not only was she an original incorporator of the watershed association, she was the driving force behind its creation and its existence for the first 10 years. She ran our Lake Host program every summer, hosted membership meetings in her home, assisted with the water quality testing, and would constantly tell others of the benefits of belonging to the association and helping protect our small lake.
Doris lived during the summertime in what was once the Harvey Lake Motel on Route 4, once operated by her parents, and in these later years, it became a place that has served as a summer oasis for her and her family.
Doris was a major reason our lake has been so well-cared-for these past many years. She was the impetus that started the watershed association in 2003, and she worked hard over the years to protect our lake: advocating for money, attending conferences, testing the water, and mainly, as the coordinator of our Lake Host program these past nine years. Many young people who served as Lake Hosts will be especially sad to know that she is gone. She was a kind and gracious supervisor who recruited high school and college students to sit at the beach/ramp and educate boaters about the dangers of invasive plant species.
One of my fondest memories was during the summer of 2012 when I joined Doris and Karen Smith, our former water quality coordinator, as we tested the water quality on a fine summer day, with Doris captaining our rowboat (Karen and me at the oars) trying to find the exact center of the deep spot on the lake as the wind blew us around.
Doris was unflappable. As I worried about dumping us all into the lake, especially this very prim and proper, elegant lady, (She would often wear her hair up in a bun!) Doris for her part mouthed words of encouragement, enjoying the day, soaking in the sun.
But what was most impressive to me was going back to her home after we were through and finding it full of extended family, all visiting for the day, or the week, or the summer: several generations, all under her roof, all welcome and part of her life at the lake. It was akin to something out of a 1950s era TV show.
She was to us who knew her at the lake, just Doris, a wonderful friend, mentor and someone we could count on to help us with the association's work, oftentimes hosting the meetings in her home.
Every summer, after she arrived back from Maryland, she'd look forward to the arrival of her children and her grandchildren, the speedboat coming out of storage, the house made ready. Her son and his family stay for several weeks each year, and they are often out on the lake at all hours of the day, all days of the week - waterskiing, wakeboarding, and tubing - making every second of their stay count. Doris had passed on her great love for this small lake to other generations.
A very nice obituary appeared in The Baltimore Sun, and you can read it here:
It noted that for more than half a century, Doris enjoyed vacationing at her parents' motel on Harvey Lake in Northwood, N.H., "where she learned to water ski at 50 and windsurf a decade later. She was also a founder of the Harvey Lake Association."
Many of us were not aware of the whole other life that Doris lived: The very impressive career as a professor of sociology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Harvey Lake was where she chose to spend her summers, but Doris was a respected researcher and teacher, a Guggenheim Fellow, a Ph.D.who published often and continued doing her work as a research professor right up till her death. She navigated the halls of academia quite impressively: Her 19-page curriculum vitae on the college's website is the proof of that.
Her area of specialty was studying human development from a young age, especially as it was impacted by schools. She was involved in a study of 800 Baltimore students, following them since they entered first grade in 1982, researching areas that affected their education, especially the effect of summer vacation on how children retain information, and also the gender gap in math education.
In fact, a few summers ago I was reading Malcolm Gladwell's bestselling book, "Outliers," about the creation of successful people, and there in the back was a footnote referencing Doris' work! When I shared the fact that I actually saw her name in the notes, she was very proud, very modest about her achievements, and very willing to share information about the scope of her work.
After all, she was a teacher, and she embodied that aspect of her life every day. When she gave a report on our Lake Host program before our members one summer, she spoke of the important work we are doing to keep the lake clear of invasive weeds that can choke our lake and hamper our enjoyment of the water, but more so, she spoke of the lasting effect of having all these young people serve as Lake Hosts, learning about the lake and how to keep it clean and safe. To her, that was more important: having people carry on this legacy as protectors of the lake.
Doris was 89, and it's difficult for many of us to reconcile that number with her tireless energy. She would, on the lake's behalf, walk the perimeter around Harmony Road and Route 4, encouraging people to become part of the lake association, introducing herself, encouraging people to get involved. She recruited me and others in this way.
She always was there lending words of encouragement to me and others. She was a master of the well-placed compliment. And she meant every word of what she said.
Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, her three children, her grandchildren, and to Jean Hunter, her sister, who recently moved from the lake and has created her own legacy of protecting Harvey Lake over the years.
We thank Doris, we cherish her memory, and we say: Doris, for making our little part of New Hampshire a much better place to live, thank you so much for being our friend and our mentor. We will miss you very, very much.