(Cover photo of Grace and Pete O’Geary)
Thursday night in Henderson, James D. “Pete” O’Geary was presented the Lone Scout Award by the Boy Scouts of America, the Occoneechee Council. O’Geary is the recipient of the Citizen of the Year award for 2016.
This recognition was given at the 2016 George Rose Watkins, Sr. Citizen of the Year Award Dinner, May 5, 2016 at the Henderson Country Club.
R.G. “Chick” Young was presented the award in 2015, and the award was established in 2014 and named for and given to Watkins.
The award was given to O’Geary for his dedication and service to the community, because he is a businessman and former owner of Petal Shoppe Florist and Gift Shoppe, because he served on the Henderson City Council for six terms and because he was the Mayor of Henderson for eight consecutive years.
O’Geary was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine recently as well, and he served on various city boards and committees as well as being Chairman of the Board and Chairman of the Finance Committee for the Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Government. At the present time, O’Geary serves on the Salvation Army Board of Directors and on the Henderson Planning Board.
At the award dinner, guests were welcomed by Cliff Rogers, immediate past president of the Occoneechee Council. The flag was presented by Boy Scout Troop 605 from First Presbyterian Church of Henderson. The invocation was given by Pastor Ralph E. McGowen from West End Baptist Church where O’Geary has been a member for 56 years.
Rogers gave a brief outline of scouting in the council, which covers Vance, Warren, Granville and Franklin counties and the communities of Wendell, Zebulon and Rolesville while serving 559 youth.
McGowen presented a testimonial and spoke of O’Geary’s dedication and many years of service to the church, and he also spoke of O’Geary’s character, integrity and faithfulness in representing this community.
Former City Manager Ray Griffin spoke of O’Geary’s selfless leadership and service to this community, his partnership with the City Council and his great desire to create harmony in the community.
Dr. Steve O’Geary spoke on behalf of his father for his dedication to family, church and community, for the way he loved and connected his family, for the standards set by his father as examples for all to live by and for standing up for what he believes in.
Pete O’Geary thanked the scouts for their support in the community and for their role in shaping lives. He thanked the scouts and community for supporting him.
John Akerman, scout executive of the Occoneechee Council, ended the dinner with the scoutmaster benediction.
(The award dinner was attended and written up by Susan Rose for WIZS News.)