Remembering Lucy Marie Smith Vazzana

At Boston Clear, we understand that we are part of a legacy of stewards who have watched over Pocahontas Spring for centuries. One of those stewards passed away earlier this month; Lucy Marie Smith Vazzana.

The Smith Family At Pocahontas Spring

Lucy was the daughter of Joseph F. and Della Alice Rich Smith. Starting in the early 1900s, it was Joseph who began selling water from our spring and delivering it all over around the North Store in horse drawn wagons. We were fortunate to hear a story from John Smith, brother of Lucy, who told us about water being drawn from the spring to help fight the Great Salem Fire of 1914.

Lucy was also kind enough to support Boston Clear in its recent dispute before the Lynnfield Zoning Board of Appeals that has since been settled. Lucy knew the heritage of the spring and its importance of it being a resource to be passed on for generations to come. We even got a direct note from Lucy on our website not long after we took over; “I am so proud of what you have done to the Pocahontas Spring! I am sure my father is looking down and smiling. Thank you for preserving this beautiful God-given natural resource.” We have always felt the presence of people like Lucy at the spring and am sure she is looking down at us with a smile as well.

Before moving to North Carolina to retire, Lucy was a special needs teacher and taught at several different schools around Lynnfield. She was a longtime member of the Lynnfield Congregational Church where she was the chairperson of the church prayer group. Lucy also served as president of the Lynnfield Flower Club. 

After moving to Ocean Isle Beach, NC more than 12 years ago, she became very involved in the Seaside United Methodist Church in Sunset Beach, and was a member of their prayer group. Lucy was someone who stayed active and enjoyed golf. She was a member of the Ladies Golf League of The Thistle Golf Club, the “Out to Lunch Bunch” at Ocean Ridge.

We are thankful for her stewardship, her grace in serving others and her support of our work. She will be missed and fondly remembered.

The Future Of Water

We are constantly monitoring the world of water.  While there is both good news about the drinking water on our planet, there is also troubling  news.  One thing that is for certain, there are changes coming.

As we head into 2019, we wanted  to share with you some  our observations on  water  issues.  You can follow us here throughout 2019 as we also adapt to the challenges of our changing planet.

Here is what to look for  in 2019:

  1. Tap Water Is Not Safe – Have you heard “They said the water  is safe.” Well, we need to know who “they” are and start pushing back.  In recent meetings with the Lynnfield Central Water District  (MA), management has told the residents the water is safe despite gray and dark water coming from the faucet.  In a contentious  meeting last week, LCWD faced angry residents who are concerned about their water.  LCWD proposed a multi-million water filtration system to solve the problem but residence wanted more information and requested a study.  The truth is, the study will likely lead to even more  expensive alternatives.  These types of meetings are taking place all over the  country as communities face the fact that our aging water systems cannot deliver quality/safe water to the faucet.
  2. Delivery of water is changing – For those of you who come to Boston Clear with your containers, you know how the delivery of  water  is changing.  For  years, we all drank out of the tap, then there was bottled water at the store,  now people are seeking out their own water supplies.  We appreciate your journey to our spring and offer a place to reflect on this wonderful resource, however the next delivery of water delivery system is evolving.  People are buying huge storage tanks and rely on tanker trucks to deliver their  water.  This is much like the home fuel oil delivery system we have today.
  3. The price of water is going to rise – Many of us never imagined paying $5 for a cup of coffee any more than we thought of buying a $2 bottle of water …  but here we are.  With water from the tap becoming more unreliable, clean water resources dwindling and hedge funds buying up  supplies (see #7 below), water is going to go up  in price.  We  noted a bottled mineral spring water at Whole Foods that is  being sold for $6.50/gallon.
  4. Plastic is out – Our oceans are filling up with plastic and the problem is driven by plastic containers,  particularly water.  It  is not uncommon for a single  person to go through 3-5 bottled waters each day.  Look for more refilling of containers and more studies  on the poison that seeps into  water from  plastic containers.  More glass please!
  5. Clean Ups Are Coming – After decades of polluting  and decades more deciding on legal responsibility /  price, cleanup of contamination on some sites will be coming.  The solution is going to involve taking ground water through filtration system, adding chemicals to treat the water, then pumping it back into the ground.  Will it work?  Time  will tell.
  6. The EPA is Behind – The EPA cannot keep  up with the  chemicals that are being dumped  into  the water.  People are flushing chemicals, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and trash.  A report by CNN  found that there are numerous chemicals in the water that are not even being tested for.  For those of you who love documentaries, we recommend What Lies Upstream … about a chemical spill into a river in West Virginia.  The people are poor and the politicians are enept. 
  7. Big Companies Are Buying Up Water Sources – Harvard, whose endowment is multi-billion dollars, has been getting into a new investment … water.  Hedge funds are buying  up  water supplies.  Even former president George W. Bush purchased thousands of acres in South America that contains a  large water aquifer.  
  8. What Happens Over There Will Happen Here  – We only  need to look at the challenges  in other countries to see what could come our way.  We say “could” because we think things can change if major reforms are undertaken.  However, in places like India, clean water is in such a shortage that towns often bring in tankers to allow people to access to safe water.
  9. Supply Chain Transparency – People want to know where the items they  consume come from.  Organic farm stands are popping up everywhere because consumers are concerned about pesticides and how their food is handled.  Your water should be no different.  Our water at Boston Clear comes from the spring, through a filter to remove any particles, then hit with a ultraviolet light for any possible organic matter.  Then  it goes  into  your bottle.  Keeping  it simple!
  10. Identifying Polluters  – Sometimes it takes decades for us to  know that a company has been poisoning the water.  One big polluter has been military bases …. look for many more disclosures and sad stories.