At 65 years of age, I can say that I have driven, walked, or ridden my bike by the park for 61 years nearly everyday. Only while I was in college was it not the geographical center of my life. Attending Nottingham school, my friends and I lived in the nooks and crannies after hours. I attended Hope Church, at the opposite corner. Graduating from Busch School, the walk home to Winnebago made me cross the entire park everyday. As an athlete, the park became the barometer of endurance as everyone ran the perimeter and worked out on the hills. Later, I became a regular on the handball courts.
My son with the support of his Boy Scout Troop, actually surveyed the park. His Eagle Scout project hangs on the fence of the tennis courts. It provides all with distances, elevations etc. for their workouts. With my son’s death, he is memorialized just off of Tamm in Craig’s Cove.
The park is an anchor physically and psychologically to all in the neighborhood. It is time to remember the man who made the park possible, David R. Francis. A statue of this St Louis leader is a perfect tribute. As designed, the statue will add even greater dignity to the homes which surround the park. Whimsical art adds to our culture for sure, but a piece of classic art endures for centuries. I salute the group undertaking the task of raising the money to build the statue and helping to preserve history in the minds of the future generations. — Steve Doss