New flag is raised in honor of former Wilton volunteer

Raising the new flag in front of the gazebo on Nov. 27 in Wilton Center on are, from left, Jeff Turner, past Kiwanis Club president Kiwanis and American Legion member, Greg Chann, Kiwanis president and Legion member, and Bill Glass, Commander American Legion Post 86. The flag honors George McKendry, a founding member and early president of the Kiwanis Club.

Raising the new flag in front of the gazebo on Nov. 27 in Wilton Center on are, from left, Jeff Turner, past Kiwanis Club president Kiwanis and American Legion member, Greg Chann, Kiwanis president and Legion member, and Bill Glass, Commander American Legion Post 86. The flag honors George McKendry, a founding member and early president of the Kiwanis Club.

Wilton Kiwanis Club / Contributed photo

WILTON — The origin of the flagpole in Wilton Center in front of the gazebo is not well-known.

It was Oct. 19, 1988, when the Wilton Kiwanis Club dedicated, and gave to the town, a new flagpole in Wilton Center in honor of George McKendry as he readied himself to retire to Dartmouth, Mass. McKendry, a longtime partner in the law firm of McKendry & Perry, embodied the spirit of community service for 36 years.

McKendry was one of the 43 founding and charter members of the Kiwanis Club, a past president and long-time member of the board. He came to Wilton in the late1940s and for many years was the only attorney in town, serving as town counsel during the late 50s and early 60s, when the town had only six paid employees.

McKendry and the Kiwanis Club were instrumental in the development of community recreational facilities, spearheading the drive to acquire the land for what ultimately became Kiwanis Park and the Wilton YMCA. As the sole trustee of the Ogden estate with funds “to be used for some community purpose,” he made sure Ogden House, the senior living facility in Wilton Center, became a reality.

“An awful lot of fuss for a little old guy like me,” said the club’s honoree.

It was noted recently, by American Legion Post 86 Commander Bill Glass who maintains the flag, that the flag itself was in need of replacement. The Kiwanis Club stepped up to purchase a new flag that was raised on Nov. 27, to continue to honor McKendry and its commitment to serving the community through volunteer service opportunities.