Bexley News

Molly Davis Memorial Garden

Project to reflect attributes of educator

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Taking part in the groundbreaking for the Molly Davis Memorial Garden at Cassingham Elementary School are students (from left) Ajali Russell, Lucy Pyle, Jonah Smith, Hayes Pyle, Teddy Petrescu and Bar Minuskin.

The Cassingham Elementary School community has officially broken ground on the Molly Davis Memorial Garden at the northwest corner of the campus.

The groundbreaking event was part of the school's annual Memorial Day observance, held May 24.

The garden will be established in memory of Davis, a longtime Cassingham teacher who died suddenly in 2011.

Mary McMullen, a special guest and former Cassingham teacher, helped Principal Jeannine Hetzler place a ceremonial shovel in the ground. McMullen, Davis' sister, taught alongside her for many years.

The event included remarks from many who knew Davis.

Deborah Forsblom, retiring musical specialist, presented her own parting gift to the school: a "peace pole" to be placed in the memorial garden.

First-grade teacher Maryanne Claydon expressed hope that visitors would find "friendliness, bubbliness, spirituality ... and knowledge" in Molly's Garden.

Student Liam Flanigan, who was in Davis' last class at Cassingham, added, "She made us want to learn more ... She cared about each student as if he or she was her own son or daughter."

Tom Griffin, a former colleague, performed a song by Stephen Stills that he had adapted for the occasion.

During the conclusion of the ceremony, children and faculty members placed flowers at the base of the peace pole.

The city of Bexley approved plans for the garden in January and the school's neighbors have indicated support of the project. The school's PTO and the Bexley Education Foundation, as well as some individuals, have provided support for the building of the garden.

Donations to Molly's Garden will help fund its development and ongoing maintenance needs and can be made at any level to the BEF.