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Rotary Club marks 75th anniversary

By Kay S. Pedrotti Rotary Club dignitaries, past presidents, those newly named to District 6900 leadership posts and local and area club members recently celebrated the Barnesville club’s 75th year of working for the good of the community. District 6900 governor Blake McBurney was the keynote speaker and received the club’s first 75th commemorative lapel pin. Bob Taylor, club historian; Charles Dukes, past president during the 50th anniversary celebration and honorary member and past president Floyd Moye also shared their thoughts and memories of the club’s history, said president Andy Bush. President-elect Ryran Traylor offered what Bush described as ‘a challenging toast to the next 75 years.’ The local club is respected for its contributions to the well-being of Barnesville and Lamar County residents, especially children. District 6900 sponsored 102 at-risk children to Camp Grace last year, where they receive counseling, fun experiences and learning opportunities; 38 of the children were from Lamar, according to Rotarian Mark Stone, past president and now district assistant governor. The club has sponsored several tributes to veterans and will honor them again in May, focusing on Korean War vets. The annual ‘Feeding Our Neighbors’ 5K Run/Walk is an ongoing benefit for the area food ministries. Other recent projects included financial assistance to train a service animal for a special needs child; blood drives in partnership with the Barnesville Women’s League; providing a work group and financial assistance for the Roosevelt Warm Springs Adopta- Cottage program; sponsored two AIDS Awareness seminars at Lamar County High; sponsored Flu Mist for school children; participating in the annual Great Day of Service; furnishing T-shirts and awards for the DARE program; contributing nutritional items to K-8 students through the Backpack Program and multiple donations through each year as needs arise. Bush thanked all those responsible for putting together the celebration event at Gordon State College and cited a paraphrase of the start of President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: ‘Three score and 15 years ago our founders embarked on an endeavor of ‘˜Service above Self.’ We are neighbors, community leaders and global citizens uniting for the common good. Standing on our theme, ‘˜Engage Rotary and Change Lives,’ we believe we can unite together to accomplish more. We raised our glasses again to the period in which those who follow us will achieve the vision to improve the lives of others by helping build a better, more stable and peaceful future.’

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