ENON – The family of late Enon Mayor Charles E. Koons, village officials, former colleagues and many friends came together on Tuesday evening, Sept. 8, at the Enon Water Department Treatment Facility, 2825 Enon Road, to honor the village’s longest-serving mayor.
During an inspirational ceremony, village officials dedicated the facility in memory of Koons who passed away in February 2003, and the Koons family unveiled the new sign, which officially renamed the facility in his honor, amid applause from the crowd.
Mayor from 1958 to 1965 and again, from 1967 to 1988, Koons recognized the importance of a municipal water distribution system and played an instrumental role in establishing the public system in October 1959, according to Enon Village Administrator Benjamin Ross. The new system costed $426,000 and was equipped to serve 500 homes, and pump 250 gallons per minute. It also included a 200,000 gallon storage tank, and a softening plant capable of reducing hardness to five grains.
“The Enon Water Works Treatment Plant is responsible for the treatment of water supplied to the residents of Enon and western Clark County and is a primary source of revenue for the village,” Ross said when addressing approximately 50 people who attended the ceremony.
Mayor Tim Howard also pointed out during the ceremony that Koons had a true passion about the village and the water treatment facility.
“Charlie was that stable presence in the village for years. He would take off work from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to help out any way he could,” Howard said. “Charlie was involved heavily in every stage from the design and engineering, the construction, and the daily operations of this water treatment plant. He wanted everything inside and outside to look nice and operate properly. He also was very supportive of his employees’ education, training, and water treatment licensing and certifications.”
After the unveiling of the sign, Geneva Koons expressed her appreciation to village officials for the fitting tribute to her late husband.
“This is such a wonderful way to remember Charlie and all the work and effort he put into this water treatment plant,” Geneva Koons said. “I really want to thank Mayor Howard and village council members for renaming the plant in his honor.”
Village officials also presented Geneva Koons and her two daughters, Jennifer Hawks and Robin Barry, three assorted flower bouquets.
Hawks said her father would have been very honored of the special recognition.
“Dad worked very hard for this village,” Hawks said. “He would have been very pleased.”
Barry noted that the family shared many of the same emotions throughout the dedication ceremony.
“I’m sure we all felt the same. I was very touched by the tribute to dad, and I had to wipe away a few tears. Tim had such respect and maybe, a little love for dad,” Barry said. “The evening was wonderful.”
Those in attendance also got a first-hand look at the recent upgrades completed at the water works treatment plant during an open house of the facility following the dedication ceremony. Enon Water Superintendent Steve Durall and Water Operator Ryan Brown pointed out the two new, larger water softening tanks that are now housed in the newly renovated section of the facility.
“The water department staff worked very hard in preparation of this event,” Durall said. “They painted and cleaned up inside and out.”
Representatives from LJB Inc., an area engineering firm, and Kirk Bros. Co. Inc., a local general contractor, were also on hand to answer any questions regarding the design and reconstruction of the south section of the plant.
Enon Administrative Assistant Kristy Thome, who took photos throughout the evening, noted that adorning the water treatment plant with his name was a very deserving tribute to Koons.
“What a wonderful way to recognize someone that contributed so much in establishing the municipal water system,” said Thome.
Linda Collins is a freelance reporter for Greene County News.