In September, the news images of the flooding in Lyons, Colorado, began to appear in the homes of the people of Lyons, NY. Soon the “Geezer Network” began to exchange e-mails and plans to aide a sister
community with a common name. The Geezer network was formed in 2002. The1500 individuals who either currently call Lyons, New York home, or formerly did, share memories and learn more about their common history by guessing the identities of people and places in old photographs. But the flooding in Lyons, Colorado was the present, not the past, and the Lyons, NY, Geezers chose to take action now.
Lyons, NY is a small village in western New York State situated on the Erie Canal. The village of Lyons has roughly 4000 residents. Including surrounding residents who also share a Lyons address, the population was 7192 in 2010. With Lake Ontario to the north, and the Finger Lakes to the south, this fertile farming area receives nearly three times the annual rainfall that Lyons, CO, does in a typical year. Flooding of nearby rivers and streams is a familiar situation to them. In their hearts, the people of Lyons, NY, knew the devastating effects of flooding.
In addition, at least nine former Lyons, New York, residents had found their way to Colorado to live in Longmont, Salida, Erie, Denver, Conifer and Colorado Springs, including Channel 9 co-anchor, Kyle Clark. Nancy Mervar, retired Boulder Valley educator and children’s author, lives near Rabbit Mountain Open Space with Lyons as her nearest community. As Lyons, NY, friends and family began checking on the well-being of these various transplants, a donation scheme developed. Andi Evangelist of Lyons, NY, worked with Nancy Mervar of Lyons, CO, to collect the donations that eventually yielded $6020 directed to the Lyons Community Foundation ($5645), American Red Cross ($335) and Salvation Army ($40).
These funds were presented to the Lyons Mayor Julie Van Domelen, Trustee Lavern Johnson, and Lyons Community Foundation Chairwoman Dr. Liz Erley on Friday, December 6. Nancy Mervar presented the funds on behalf of the residents of Lyons, NY. The majority of the donations were from individuals with gifts ranging in amounts from $10 to $500. The largest donor was the Marshall Farm Group.
The Lyons Community Foundation has in place an application process for local families and individuals to apply for assistance for flood related expenses and essential needs. These grants, of up to $5000, will begin being awarded later this month.
Last Updated on Wednesday, December 11 2013 19:56