Memories of Doreen Alice Howell (Forman) was recorded on 9 July 1995 and covers some events and recollections from Doreen’s life. Doreen was born in Westport and was the eldest child in her family. After Doreen, there was Reg, her hearing brother and then two Deaf brothers, Mervyn and Ray. Her family moved to Napier when she was 11. Doreen attended Sumner School for the Deaf for ten years, from 1921 to 1930 and experienced the Napier earthquake on 3rd February, 1931. After working several years and being laid off, she set up her own dressmaking business working from home under the name of ‘Doreen Forman Dressmaker’. She met her future husband Maxwell (Max) Howell who was also Deaf at the Wellington Deaf Club and they married in June 1948. One month later they attended a function to celebrate Helen Keller’s visit to Wellington. They had two Deaf children, Pam Witko and Garry Howell. Doreen and Max played Indoor Bowls for the Deaf for many years. She was a life member of the Wellington Deaf Society. At time of her 100th, Doreen had 9 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren. She spent 60 years of her life living in Paraparaumu.
In this interview, Doreen also takes us through some of her photos at the end. These memories were recorded on videotape by Dorothy Jones at Pam and Kaz Witko’s place in Wellington.
Doreen passed away peacefully on Thursday 19 May 2016 at 101 years old.