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City Council Approves Plaque Honoring Mark Ryan

Officials discussed at length if Ryan fit the bill, ultimately deciding to honor him with an alternate plaque.

File photo.
File photo.
After much discussion between Council members and members of the community, city officials voted on a compromise to honor Mark Ryan with a plaque to be placed somewhere in Finkbiner Park.

The City Council voted 3-1 on a compromise motion, with Judy Nelson voting no and Gene Murabito absent. The compromise would allow for a small metal plaque to be placed in an exiting location in Finkbiner Park, as opposed to the Historical Pride Marker initially sought after.

Officials largely agreed that the Historical Pride Marker is typically applied to architecture that is a part of the city's history and that it didn't apply in honoring individuals.

Many people from the community were in attendance for the meeting to show support for a plaque honoring Ryan, including Marcia Conway and Mike Coway of the Glendora Historical Society and Zak Bushey who spearheaded the effort for a plaque.

"I think that we all can recognize that something should be done for Mark," said Zak Bushey, one of the main people responsible for the plaque effort. "Let this plaque act as a reminder, not just of Mark Ryan, but also how a community can accept people in spite of their challenges."

Council member Judy Nelson remarked how much of a learning experience this was in seeing what an impact Ryan had in Glendora. Nelson initially indicated she would support the Pride Marker honoring Ryan, but ultimately voted against.

Council member Doug Tessitor felt that Ryan may not fit within the parameters of the Pride Marker ordinance and said a Pride Marker fixed to the Glendora Historical Society would be a better location instead of placing it at Finkbiner Park as the Historical Society requested. Tessitor eventually agreed with the metal plaque.

Council member Davis agreed with Tessitor that Pride Markers are for historical buildings and supported an honorary plaque consistent with metal plaques seen elsewhere in town.

Mayor Santoro supported the 4-inch by 6-inch metal plaque that Davis suggested and added that placing it on a bench would put it in a much more public area than near the bandshell at Finkbiner.

City Manager Chris Jeffers indicated that city staff will work with the Historical Society on a location for the metal plaque.
Denise B. January 15, 2014 at 01:58 PM
I like the idea of placing it near a bike rack.
Larry S January 15, 2014 at 05:32 PM
How ironic. In posts on this site I have read dozens of testaments from people who thought this honor was a good idea and yet only the "RIGHT" three people finally make it happen? So apparently, the opinions, wishes and directives of the rest of the population doesn't matter as much. This should have been approved months ago. And yes, Denise, putting it near a bike rack is appropriate. But at this point that decision may take another 6 months.
Bill C. January 16, 2014 at 01:16 PM
Be serious Larry, this is how this type of thing is supposed to work. A fixture in town like Mark passes and it stirs people to the point they want some recognition for him so they start talking it up on social media sites, eventually run it up the ladder and it gets accomplished. You vote in people to make decisions. It doesn't make them any better than anyone else but it empowers them to do certain things. There's a process to everything, it's the way it is and everyone wants their say and like it or not it takes a little bit of time. The people spoke, their reps listened and justice for Mark was served. If it was true that , "the opinions, wishes and directives of the rest of the population doesn't matter as much" than the three that made it happened...it wouldn't be happening at all.

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