Selwin A. Dodge, Hero of Dogs for the Blinde |
(Edward S, William C., Simeon, Simeon, William, Robert, William, William (Farmer)
Without doubt, one of the most dramaticand best known service activities of The Lions Club is the Leader Dogprogram. The Leader Dog School was founded in 1939 by three Lions who
were unable to obtain Leader Dogs from any other source. Founders were S.A.
Dodge, Donald p. Schuur and Charles A. Nutting; all of whom later
served as President of the Leader Dog organization. Conceived in a
dream, Leader Dog has grown to be one of the largest and finest dog
guide schools in the world.
The whole enterprise began, with more courage than anything else, when a few Lions from Detroit, Michigan, purchased an old farmhouse which still stands in the center of a complex now valued at over seven million dollars. The Leader Dog School in Rochester, Michigan, is adjacent to an estimated 45% of the nation's blind.
During its first years of operation, only a few people graduated. In fiscal year 1998, 279 Leader Dog teams graduated; 279 more blind people went out into the world able to live a life of their own, despite blindness. Nearly 11,000 Leader Dogs have been trained since the founding of the school in 1939. For 57 years Lions and Lioness have invested untold time and effort in the Leader Dog program. During fiscal year 1998 which ended June 30, 1998, Lions and Lioness have contributed nearly 2.5 million dollars. Leader Dog offers its services through the Lions and Lionesses of all states to the blind. Lions and Lionesses help spread the word that blind people who want to be free and mobile can have a Leader Dog for the asking and can write in behalf of a blind candidate to obtain an application.
The above information was taken from the following two sites on the internet rollanet.org and sirinet.net
The information below was found on the following web site: http://www.geocities.com/kenockee/AvocaMemories.html
One native of Avoca, Michigan, Selwyn A. Dodge, better known as S. A. Dodge, gained world wide fame as President of Lions International. He was the son of Edgar Dodge. In 1917, he graduated from the University of Michigan and by 1922, had become a Certified Public Accountant. Later, he became Vice-President and Treasurer of Solventol Chemical Products, Inc. and Director of several business concerns.
In 1952-53, S. A. Dodge was elected President of Lions International by a unanimous ballot. During his tenure, he visited Lions Clubs all over the world.
Not only did he grow up in Avoca, but he also married Avoca girls. His first wife was Vera. Upon her passing, S. A. Dodge married Vera's sister, Verna, both daughters of Dr. and Mrs. Lancelot Ardiel.
In 1952, the Ruby Lions Club, of which he was a member, planned a homecoming celebration for S. A. Dodge and his wife, Verna. Approximately 400 people attended the program, which was held October 15, 1952, at the County Warehouse in Avoca. All the Lions Clubs of the state were represented and those of Ontario, Canada. The program included a "This Is Your Life, S. A. Dodge," conducted by Rev. Shelby Lee. WHLS Radio Station came out and broadcast the speech made by Mr. Dodge.
The Avoca Elevator, 1946 - Throughout the years, the elevators have played an important part in the economy of Kenockee's farm community. Shortly after the building of the railroad in 1882, Edgar S. Dodge built the first grain elevator in Avoca. This was the beginning of the elevator that still stands today. Dodge advertised himself as a "dealer in grain, hay, agricultural implements, wagons, carriages, etc." When the bank was built at the turn of the century, Ed Dodge sold the elevator to Frank Hill and Robert Wadsworth and went to work as a teller in the Avoca Bank. Hill and Wadsworth remodeled and enlarged the existing building.
As a child, circa 1894, Harry Smith recalls going with his father, Warren, to Ed Dodge's Elevator. There he watched with fascination as the big, gray horse, named Frank, walked round and round against the lead bars on the treadmill, to run the machinery and raise the buckets of grain.
On Sundays, Mr. Dodge hitched the same horse to his buggy and old Frank became a "Sunday horse." Later, a gasoline engine was used for power and eventually, all was converted to electricity.
Few people remember Dave Quail's Elevator, which before the turn of the century, sat just to the southeast of the depot, along the railroad tracks. In 1900, Wesley Bricker and Stanley Smith rented this elevator.
In 1902, after two very successful years of renting Dave Quail' s Elevator, Wes Bricker built another elevator just northwest, up the railroad track, behind the "Dodge" Elevator. At this
Farmer's would bring their loads of grain and hay into Avoca and a man from each elevator would come out and bid, with the load going to the highest bidder. For fourteen years, the two elevators were in competition, until the Handy Brothers Railroad was built through Fargo, in 1915 and the Bricker Elevator was moved to that community in 1916. Rueben Green did the carpenter work necessary to prepare the elevator for its move and Arthur Nye did the moving with horses and skids. Note: The D. B. C. and W. Railroad, locally known by the name of its builders, the Handy Brothers, was started from Bay City in 1908, reaching Port Huron in 1918. Work through Fargo took place in 1915 and it was opened early in 1916. This railroad was used only until 1925.
The main business of the elevators over the years has included the buying and selling of hay, grain and coal. Owners of the present elevator, after Hill and Wadsworth, were: Jim Kerr and Wesley Bricker, 1910-1919; Jim Kerr and Harry Bricker, 1919-1925; Jim Kerr and Leslie Collins, 1925. When Leslie Collins and William Collins took over in 1932, it was renamed the Avoca Elevator Company. It is presently owned and operated by Russell and Grant Collins.