Memorial bench installed on Spit

More benches donated by Rotary will go in this summer

A new bench installed earlier this month on the Homer Spit Trail heralds the upcoming of more memorial benches in city parks. Earlier this month, Parks Superintendent Matt Steffy and his crew put in a bench honoring the late Hilary Adams, a 20-year Homer resident.

Adams’ daughter, Shell Perretta, and her husband, David Boissonault, visited Homer for the occasion. They had postponed the installation from the summer of 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perretta and Boissonault paid for the bench, called a Trex bench for the brand of plastic wood used for the seat and back. They asked for the bench to be installed at a favorite view of Adams, a spot overlooking the wreck of the Try Again II fishing boat and Mud Bay.

“This is her home,” Perretta said of her mother at the installation on June 7. “We need to do everything we can to give back to this community.”

Steffy said a little platform will be built later this summer to place the bench further away from the Spit Trail.

Perretta credited Steffy with setting up the accounting to make it possible for a donation to pay for the bench. That cleared the way for more memorial bench donations in the works, including four benches donated by the Kachemak Bay Rotary Club in honor of Gary Thomas, a longtime Rotary member and community volunteer who died in January 2020.

“All of this came about as a way to honor Gary,” said Rotary President Lori Evans.

One bench in particular, to go in at Wisdom, Knowledge, Faith and Love Park, will have Thomas’ name. Other benches will be installed at Bishop’s Beach, on the Spit Trail and at the picnic shelter by the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon.

A handmade bench crafted by Rotary member Dave Brann and with the help of Robert Archibald has been installed on the floatplane docks on Beluga Lake near Ben Walters Park. Rotary has taken on improving that park as a project, with Rotary member Tom Early steering that project.

Funds for the benches came from the Kachemak Bay Rotary, with a match by the Rotary District 5010. Evans said the benches will be installed later this summer, with an event to be announced.

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