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Marysville Class of '66 donates bench to Comeford Park


Christopher Andersson

The Marysville High School Class of 1966 dedicated a new park bench at Comeford Park on June 13 near the park's splash pad.

Many representatives of the class, which included 210 students at the time of graduation, came out that morning to the park to memorialize the contribution to the community.

Class members had the idea during their reunion last September to give back to the community for their 60th year reunion.

They held a silent auction at the time to raise funds to be able to give back to Marysville, according to Wanda Wilhonen, a member of the Marysville High School Class of '66

"We knew we were going to do something," she said, although classes typically give gifts back to the school they are from.

"Marysville High School is no more, so we thought we would do something for the community," said Wilhonen.

"We gave many thoughts for many different options and thought something for the community would be best," she said.

They made the decision to contribute a $2,500 park bench in-between the splash pad and the water tower at Comfort Park.

"We made the decision in November of what we were going to do, and then worked with the city of Marysville," said Wilhonen.

"Well worth the investment in our community, even though not all of us live in Marysville now," said Wilhonen, who currently lives in Arlington.

Marysville Parks, Culture and Recreation Director Jim Ballew wanted to thank the group for improving a local park.

"I want to thank you for memorializing your efforts as students, and the fact that you're giving back to this community is huge," he said.

"A lot of people take that for granted. They come, they go, but you've left a lasting footprint and thousands of people will enjoy this," he said.

The Comeford Park splash pad has brought a lot of people back to the park during warm days and the bench will help provide more areas for parents to sit, said Wilhonen.

"This park gets a lot of use during the summertime," she said.

The water tower also looms behind the bench, which was a symbol some of the class remember quite well.

"All of us remember this [water tower] because some of us went up there and painted '66' on it when we were graduating," said Wilhonen.

"We wouldn't do that now," she joked. Measures have been installed since then on the water tower that prevent climbing unless you have a ladder.

Wilhonen said that it has been a long road for many of the class.

"We began 63 years ago and traveled to all corners of the world," she said. "All those journeys have led us to be here today."

She said the bench was to be dedicated to the City of Marysville "for all members of the community to enjoy."


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