By placing a concrete bench next to the Central Park pavilion in Ramsey, the Ramsey Lions Club honored the memory of its last charter member who died one year ago.
Gene Hinrichs been one of the founding members of the Ramsey Lions Club and was involved 44 years up until his death at the age of 92 on June 11, 2016. He was the last surviving charter member.
On June 7, several members of the club were joined by Ramsey City Administrator Kurt Ulrich and Council Member Mark Kuzma in a dedication ceremony for the new bench. It was placed by the Central Park pavilion that the Lions Club built, said Dale McKusick.
McKusick and fellow Lions Club members Gordy Berger and Frank Frederick said Hinrichs never missed a meeting or an event.
“You could always count on him to be there,” Frederick said.
The Ramsey Lions Club has been involved in various community projects including packaging and handing out gift and food baskets at Christmas, collecting donated eyeglasses and donating to various causes including veterans programs, service dogs, scouting programs, family hardship situations, food shelves, scholarships and much more.
McKusick had been a new Ramsey Lions Club member when Hinrichs became ill and later passed away. But in their short time together Hinrichs left a great impression on him and McKusick said he wanted to have something in the community where Hinrichs name would forever be attached to.
“I took it on to do something special for him,” McKusick said.
Kuzma is glad to see the bench in such a prominent area of Central Park for people to see and use.
“They’re just awesome for the community,” Kuzma said.