To The Herald-Whig:
It has been very gratifying to work on the dedication of Quincy's new K-5 elementary schools. As a board member, I greatly appreciate the work of the board, superintendent, administration, staff, students, parents and community. I feel the need to thank others.
First, the families of Col. Iles and Dr. Rooney who traveled hundreds of miles at their own expense: These guests added a deep sense of historical value. It was profoundly thoughtful for them to come and help us recognize two notable Quincyans of historical importance to our nation.
To the Adams County Historical Society for the loan of artifacts associated with Dr. Rooney, to the veterans who helped unearth information related to Iles (Roy Webb, Louie Demers, Otis Pleasant and Les Fonza, a cousin of Iles), and to Woodland Cemetery staff, who located the Fox family resting place, many thanks.
Riddle Noble offered his beautiful historical home at 1677 Maine to host a reception for the Iles family at no charge. Dienna Drew at the Unitarian Church did thorough research given to the Rooney family and the Rev. Haley showed hospitality at Bethel AME for the Iles family. These courtesies of time and effort were given generously to our visitors.
To the QPS Food Service staff under Jean Kinder and to Anne Boland at Hy-Vee, many thanks for covering crowds and family at both events. And to Iles and Rooney school staff: much appreciation for getting their buildings ready so well and so quickly.
There are architects, contractors, custodial and maintenance staff and countless others. I mention only a fraction here. It is a fact that the names of Iles and Rooney have marked Quincy for years to come. So, too, has the stellar hospitality of Quincy itself.