Special tribute to Roger Grunder

May 14, 2014

I wanted to take a moment to remember Roger Grunder. He was a homeless man who was in the midst of turning his life around.

Roger had the idea of collecting blankets and sleeping bags for the needy and the homeless around our area. Last Aug. 30, Roger lost his life in a car accident. He had been baptized just two days prior to this.

During a period of over two years, I would often see Roger at the local library. He had a kindred spirit that many people were endeared to.

Since Roger’s passing, those of us who knew him have missed his presence greatly. In keeping with Roger’s project for helping the needy, the Bladen Journal’s W. Curt Vincent has vowed to keep it going each year. He even honored his friend’s idea by calling the project “Roger’s Wish.”

I recently came up with another way for Roger to be remembered. With assistance from Library Director Rhea Hebert, there will be a Rosemary plant added to the garden at the Bladen County Library grounds — planted in memory of Roger. While the public may enjoy the beauty of this new addition to the garden year after year, for many others it will represent a special reminder. It will remind us of one who was taken away far too soon.

We will remember his care and concern for others. We will remember the love for life that he showed. We will remember Roger Grunder

Jeffrey Bryan

White Oak