Let me tell you a story...
This is not a story about a person or an event, there is but one star in the entire cast and that star is a bush, or a shrub.
This bush was transported to Tiffin some 20 years ago from South Carolina and donated to the Junior Home War Memorial site by a Homeboy, a beloved Homeboy named J.D. Langdale. It was to honor his younger brother, Calvin, a Marine rifleman who was the only American killed in the brilliantly executed 1951 Inchon landing into North Korea.
J.D. was personally enamored of the bush, a crepe myrtle, and had many of the plants growing in great profusion around his home.
We gingerly planted the bush as we listened raptly to his instructions on care of the delicate plant. Then, lo, for those many years, we have waited patiently to witness the explosion of beautiful red blossoms to enhance our memorial site. Apparently, we were doing something contrary to his suggestions inasmuch as the bush grew but failed to fulfill its mission of producing blossoms. How many times have I taken the dreaded axe with evil intent to remove that bush. May the good Lord forgive me for harboring such intent.
For the past month, we here in Tiffin and area have struggled mightily in near Saharan heat and have witnessed the loss of our small private gardens and larger farms and crops. We were recipients of a plethora of 100-degree-plus days inflicted without rain or cooling.
Then the miracle of change occurred, almost magically. The very bane which had brought so much devastation brought salvation to our bush. For years it has refused to die. The extreme heat was the impetus so badly needed for the crepe myrtle to blossom out. And how it blossomed - one day completely devoid of color, and the next day a brilliant reddish colored, magnificent beauty. It appears near regal as passersby stop to examine what many might call an "alien gift" from nature.
As it stands today, it is without doubt the most beautiful, alluring bush I have seen. To gaze upon it, one senses a near espousal of tranquillity, serenity; its beauty seems to elicit immense joy to someone seeking solace and beauty in nature.
I urge you to find a few moments in your day to drive past the memorial site to view this once-in-a-lifetime display of beauty.
Please permit me to congratulate the many "guys" who brought the moving wall to our community. I salute you, I salute you! I, indeed, salute you!
Joseph Buckley, Tiffin