This next profile rounds out our first ten members of our 52. It is a special one - one that was not planned yet we could not be happier to have it as part of our project. At the time of the photo I was not aware of who she was, in fact I was drawn to her simply by the neighborly deed she was providing to the residents of her street as I walked up to her. Only after talking with her and shooting the photo did I realize that it is people like her and her good-natured offerings that inspired DNA Photography to start this project in the first place. With that said we would like to introduce you to Anne (Kendell) White of Auburn, Maine.
I met Mrs. White while she was walking on the Auburn street she resides on. She had a few garbage bags filled with loose trash flung over her nearly 60-year-old shoulders. When I approached her to ask what she was doing she paused only for a moment and said "It's Earth Day" in a chipper response before continuing on with her task.
It was brisk on that Earth Day morning which explains why her cheeks are rosy in the photo. She moved swiftly along the side of the street. On some occasions even venturing deep on to people's properties to retrieve bottles and fast food bags that were most likely discarded from vehicles that had driven by.
Mrs. White has done this for the last few Earth Days and she often grabs a few loose pieces of trash during her regular walks with her mother. She said doing this simple task makes her feel good and she enjoys seeing the improved aesthetics of the neighborhood. On Earth Day she typically cleans for two-hour durations and when needed, recruits her husband to help with more challenging trash removals.
Born and raised in Maine, Mrs. White has become a wife, mother and grandmother. She has always enjoyed outdoor activities including horseback riding, skiing and bicycling.
White's passion for bicycling allows her the chance to give back to the community in another way as well. She is an active participant in the Dempsey Challenge. "My involvement in the Dempsey Challenge is one that is dear to my heart," she said. "Both my husband and one of my daughters are cancer survivors." She bikes for her family and for the many loved ones she has lost due to cancer.
"I have done the 25 mile bike (challenge) three times and volunteered in 2012," she said. "Last year I was unable to participate due to a back ailment and family responsibilities."
White is a retired nurse. She served our community for 40 years.
DNA NOTES - We just want to reiterate our opening. People like Mrs. White are exactly the reason we started this project in the first place. Along our project's journey we have encountered a few amazing celebrities and public figures that give back to the community - and our state is stronger for it. However, what really motivated us to launch this project was to find people who do amazing and sometimes even simple acts of service that really makes our world and environment a more livable place. We currently live in a land of convenience - an era of instant gratifications. Yet we sometimes forget that we have an obligation that can at times be bigger than our selves and our families. Imagine what our community would be like if we all lived by a stronger code of self value and appreciation. If we lived not just for right now but for the future as well. We want to thank all the unsung heroes out there that do our community a service and do it without recognition.
It is sad to think we live in a world where people easily litter and dispose of their unwanted items without care or consideration of the environmental consequence. On the flipside we also live in an amazing world where people like Mrs. White care enough to pick up the slack of others!