… Dad’s 72nd birthday. As I’ve mentioned before, he was the mayor of our small town in Kentucky for about 20 years, finally deciding not to run again as he moved into retirement. (Later, he would return and serve as city administrator, the position he held when he and Mom were killed. And of course, the city building is named for him, and the building’s garden for my mother.)
When we moved to Union in 1978, the listed population was about 500. We were the second family to move into our subdivision (which was rather cynically given the same name as one of Greater Cincinnati’s wealthiest neighborhoods.) There was an actual hitching post for horses in what passed for a downtown (a bank, a convenience store, a grocery, and a butcher shop.) Kids four miles away at my junior high school thought of Union as the sticks. They had a point.
Dad and the city commissioners were sharp enough to recognize that the region was growing rapidly, and they wanted to accommodate that growth while maintaining the town’s quality of life. As a consequence, although Union’s population is now more than eleven times what it was when I moved there, and now actually is home to some of the region’s wealthier citizens, it retains its bedroom community feel, the sort of place where each family who moves there is convinced that it’s just right.
And with that growth, of course, comes demands on the infrastructure. To that end, I see today that one of the new subdivisions in Union will house a new middle school in the next few years. I’m glad to see that — and I think Dad would be as well.