To the editor:
I was on vacation when my good friend and Franklin [Street] neighbor passed away. I’ve known Gene Perry ever since I came to town in 1973. Needless to say, he was in the “helping business,” and so that’s exactly what Gene did all his humble life.
When I came to town, Gene ran the old Mobil gas station on South Vine, where Randy Petsche has his business now, and later got into the plumbing and heating business.
He, along with Doran Meyer (retired plumber), kept the heat on and the water flowing for me. Doran was a lot like Gene in that he was always willing to help you with a related problem. He was a real character and jokester, as some of you might recall. He was a real hoot to play Ping Pong with. Many of my old Ping Pong gang have passed away, but what a great fun bunch we had, and like Gene, it is with mixed feelings as we bury those family and friends that we hold dear in our hearts.
We can be so thankful that God puts these wonderful and delightful people in our lives. Gene’s demeanor and smile were one of loving, caring and helping. He loved and cared for his church. You don’t have to be rich or famous to positively affect people’s lives. What a nice, Christian model of a man he was.
As I drive down Franklin St. and stop at Vine and glance left, I will picture this fine Christian gentleman smiling at me. I believe in heaven, and I ask my dear friend to pray for me.
Thanks, Gene, for all you have done for me and so many others. RIP, my dear Franklin Friend; you certainly deserve it.