Story-book ending

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 24, 2004

Times-Journal Writer

After winning the fight to create their own city and spending two years laying the groundwork, the current Valley Grande City Council met for the last time Thursday night at the Valley Grande City Hall.

The five new council members and mayor-elect Tom Lee will be sworn into office on Oct. 4.

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Sitting around the council table together for the last time, the “founding fathers” of Valley Grande used their brief meeting to thank Mayor Herb Story for his dedication to the city and everyone else who worked on the incorporation.

“Two weeks from now, it will be two years since we hired the attorneys,” Story said. “We have come a tremendous way in those two years.”

Story said on one has forgotten those residents of Valley Grande, Potter Station, and Summerfield who donated or helped raise money to begin the process of making Valley Grande it’s own community.

“Word was that we would be defeated, but it didn’t stand,” Story said. “Now look how far we have come today.”

Current Valley Grande councilman and Mayor-elect Tom Lee had plenty of praise for the man whose shoes he will soon have to fill.

“When the decision was made to go out on our own, we needed someone to step up. At that time, Herb was the one who stepped up,” Lee said. “He has done a lot of things to set this town up.”

Lee said the mayor’s role is usually to be the cheerleader for the town, but Story had a hand in every major aspect of developing the city.

Lee and the rest of the council presented Story with a plaque recognizing his dedication and many contributions to Valley Grande.

“I’m going to leave (Valley Grande) in good hands,” Story said. “We have a great council that is coming up and I have a lot of faith in them.”

The mayor said he had “mixed feelings” when the pounding of the gravel announced the end of his final council meeting.

“It’s been a lot of work. I still have a lot of phone calls to make a lot of things left to do, but I suppose you will always have work left to do,” Story said. “This has really been something I thoroughly enjoyed these last two years.”

The last and only resolution passed by the Valley Grande Council during their last meeting together was the approval to purchase property along Highway 22 to build a new volunteer fire station.

“Now I’m going to go home and start gardening-see if I can get anything to grow,” Story said. “If there is a way I can be of any help to Valley Grande, I will.”