Memorial pavers installed at Old Town Hall
"We didn't want to leave anyone out."
Helene Houle, of St. Paul, said that was the reason there are 11 bricks engraved with her L'Allier family member names in the garden at Old Town Hall.
Volunteers worked hard on Tuesday, June 24, to install the first 46 memorial pavers in the Helen Landry Memorial Garden on Main Street.
The pavers are part of an ongoing fund-raising effort to maintain the original 1886 town hall building. For $100, anyone can purchase a brick and have an inscription engraved on it to be placed in the garden.
According to Rita Lawson, one of the Old Town Hall committee members, they have already received more brick donations.
"We have the bulk of the pavers down, but still have to do the finishing, cutting and piecing along the edges," Lawson said. "When that is done we will work fine sand between the pavers, then the Village will put in a bench."
The committee will pull the blank pavers and replace them with new engraved pavers as needed.
Houle said the pavers are a good way to honor family heritage.
"We have strong ties to Somerset - all of us kids went to St. Anne's School, my grandfather's brother was the first doctor in Somerset," Houle explained.
Although none of the nine children live in Somerset anymore (two have passed on), Houle still maintains the 240-acre farm her parents worked for family gatherings.
Sheri Cox, of Pipestone, Minn, purchased a paver for her parents, the Russ and Diddie Flandrick family.
"I was born and raised in the Somerset area," Cox said. "My dad bought a farm in 1942 in the area - my brother still farms there."
Even though she lives five hours away, Cox said she keeps tabs on her old hometown via the Internet.
"I read about the pavers, and my brothers and sisters and I thought it would be great way to honor our parents," Cox said.