To celebrate the Memorial Day holiday, employees of the Chester Housing Authority (CHA) dedicated a Memorial Rose Garden to former employees who passed away while working at the agency. The Rose Garden is located in a raised bed behind CHA's administrative offices at 1111 Avenue of the States.During the dedication ceremony, CHA Housing Choice Voucher Program Director, Mary Militello explained the significance of the specific roses selected for the rose garden.
"The Peace Rose planted at the center of the garden was selected in memory of Jessie Anderson and to end violence in our community," Militello said. "The Peace Rose got its name because of the fact that it was sent to the U.S. the day Berlin fell to the Allies in World War II."
In addition, to the Peace Rose, the garden has a John F. Kennedy Rose in honor of former CHA Chief Financial Officer, Joe Keller, and the Blushing Rose in honor of Occupancy Specialist Sandra Joshua.
The garden has several plantings of pink knock out roses (for Roe Waller and Ernestine Tilghman) and red knock out roses (Bob Epps and Rolel Coleman) in the hopes that we will knock out the ravages of breast cancer and other diseases in our lifetime. To honor Ernestine Tighlman, receptionist and Resident Leader, Shanelle Johnson recited a poem entitled, "Gone But Never Forgotten.
"A prayer was offered to always be light and life to each other and to the people we serve and that our actions be rooted in love. Staff from all departments participated and offered personal reflections of the seven deceased colleagues. The ceremony concluded with the entire staff singing God Bless America.