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Bright and Brief

September 5, 1989

ALFORDSVILLE, Ind. (AP) _ Elizabeth Graber can’t remember all the names of her great-grandchildren, but then she has an excuse.

There are 154 of them.

Their ages range from 6 weeks to 20 years, and they are scattered from Indiana to Pennsylvania and from Mississippi to Canada.

Despite the distance, Mrs. Graber, 87, manages to see most of her great- grandchildren at least once a year.

Big families aren’t unusual for Mrs. Graber. She is one of 12 children herself and her late husband, Elmer, was one of 11. The couple raised ″only″ six themselves.

She says most of her 53 grandchildren ″got a fast start″ on adding to the clan. ″Some haven’t started yet,″ she says, noting that seven have not yet married. And she’s still waiting on her first great-great grandchild.

Mrs. Graber keeps a book with the names and birthdates of her 154 great- grandchildren, along with their pictures.

The whole family gets together at least once a year for a reunion. Mrs. Graber also tries to visit relatives in Kokomo, Ind., every few months and travels to Mississippi and Pennsylvania at least once a year.

″When the bus comes by, I jump in,″ she says.


PATTERSON, Ohio (AP) - If Tom Wigle is the only person elected to village office this fall, will he be a one-man government? As a councilman, will he be a quorum by himself?

Could he elect himself council president, allowing himself to become mayor?

State officials are trying to answer those questions, since Wigle was the only person to file a petition before the deadline as a candidate in the November elections in this northwest Ohio village of 153 people. No one is running for mayor or five of six council positions.

The Ohio secretary of state’s office is searching state statutes in hopes of finding out whether one person can legally run the government and to establish a procedure for the village.

″They may be breaking new ground,″ Steven Fought, spokesman for the secretary of state’s office, said Tuesday of the situation.

Wigle, who is running for re-election as councilman, thinks a one-man government isn’t such a bad idea. His theory is that one person knowing what he’s doing is better than seven who get nothing done.

″I’ve often wondered why one person couldn’t run this village with a lawyer and a bookkeeper,″ he told the Kenton Times.

Mayor Susan McClurg and two council members resigned earlier this year. Councilwoman Pat McKee assumed the role of mayor, leaving three council seats vacant. Making matters worse, the positions of mayor and those held by the three remaining council members are up for re-election.

Patterson’s problem could be solved if other residents run as write-in candidates, Fought said. Such candidates must file by Sept. 28.

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