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Beachley Pavilion dedicated

September 23, 2000

Beachley Pavilion dedicated



By ANDREW SCHOTZ / Staff Writer


After a windstorm blew the roof off the pavilion in Beaver Creek about three years ago, Louise Funk Beachley called the Washington County Commissioners for help.

The commissioners responded with $10,000 for a new one. It was built by Washington County vocational education students.

On Saturday, at a Washington County Historical Society open house, the pavilion was renamed Beachley Pavilion, in honor of Beachley, 93, and her family.

Mickey Wellman, a member of the historical society, said Beachley's legacy is one of charity, especially in education.

Beachley helped obtain the land for the Hagerstown Community College campus while she served on the board of education.

She also founded local chapters of the American Association of University Women, American Cancer Society and an auxiliary of doctors' wives.

"We are very pleased she's passed our way," Wellman said.

Historical society members, relatives and four of the five County Commissioners who approved the pavilion money showered Beachley with hugs, kisses and warm words.

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"We were glad she could come and enjoy it," said Mindy Marsden, the historical society's executive director.

Beachley, a former chemistry and biology teacher, called the honor "wonderful."

She said she's notorious for her lobbying. When there's a good cause, Beachley said, she'll solicit help from anyone she knows.

"Anyone that's lived in the county for some length of time knows me," she said.

In 1971, she got the County Commission to donate the former Beaver Creek school, southeast of Hagerstown, to the historical society, and she helped turn it into a museum.

Beachley, who acutely remembers her involvement, is still active, but she talks to most people on the telephone now. Her arthritic knees force her to use a wheelchair.

People know she's looking for a favor when she calls, she quipped.

Wellman said that Beachley, her father, her husband and her father-in-law served on the school board and her sister-in-law was a vice principal and guidance director.

When Beachley was appointed to the school board in 1960, it was also the board of trustees for Hagerstown Junior College, as it was known then. The college held its classes at the county's only high school.

In 1966, the Smith family offered to sell its farm to Beachley, who had developed two other parcels on Robinwood Drive. She wasn't interested in buying the land, but thought the college would want it for a campus.

She and two other school district officials were scheduled to meet the state's comptroller and treasurer and a representative for the governor one winter day to get their approval for the purchase.

The day of the meeting, it snowed heavily. The state officials, coming from Baltimore, got to the former Howard Johnson restaurant at U.S. 40 and Robinwood Drive four hours late.

Beachley and her colleagues didn't dare give up on them because the meeting was too important, she said.

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