For immediate release - April 12, 2011
Leesburg Couple to be Recognized for Two Decades of Community Service at Lone Oak Cemetery
The Lone Oak Cemetery is a very special place for Gordon and Peggy Dorris.
They volunteered for years to maintain the serene and pastoral location at 306 Thomas Avenue in Leesburg. Gordon has served on the cemetery’s board of directors for two decades.
So it was not unusual when the couple recently donated another unique gift to Lone Oak - a large sculpture of two bald eagles. They contributed funding for Melbourne-based chain saw sculptor Keith Carroll to create the majestic image from a large tree stump near the cemetery entrance.
On Friday, April 15, the City of Leesburg will present Gordon and Peggy Dorris with a proclamation honoring their years of devoted community service and their donation of the new sculpture at Lone Oak Cemetery. The presentation will begin at 10 a.m.
“Their efforts show how they are truly dedicated to the City of Leesburg, the Lone Oak Cemetery and those who have passed before us,” said Leesburg Mayor Bill Polk. “They have graciously offered so much of their time and energy that many other people would not consider.”
The sculpture has special meaning for Lone Oak Cemetery, which has attracted visitors for many years to view a nesting pair of bald eagles.
Keith Carroll is an accomplished artist who specializes in turning dead trees and stumps into beautiful depictions of wildlife. He has created sculptures around the state and many in cemeteries.
Carroll visited Lone Oak Cemetery on Jan. 20 and inquired about turning a large oak stump into a new sculpture. A week later the cemetery board of directors declined the offer because of limited funding. Gordon Dorris then offered to pay for the sculpture and donate it to the cemetery.
Carroll carved the eagles into the old oak stump on Feb. 4, completing work by the end of the day. The sculpture is now complemented by landscaping, a flag pole and an engraved piece of granite recognizing Keith Carroll and Gordon and Peggy Dorris.
Leesburg is a progressive city of more than 20,000 residents in northwest Lake County. The city government serves twice as many people with its electric, gas, water, wastewater and fiber-optic public utilities. Leesburg also is a central hub for commerce, attracting 50,000 people to work each weekday.