Community people came together to dedicate the city park in Van Horne as Marty Junge Memorial Park on June 11, 2022.
David Frazier, Van Horne Business Group President, led the dedication, followed by presentation of a certificate from Van Horne Mayor Pat Gorkow.
On behalf of the Park Dance Committee, The Van Horne Business Group, The City Council, and the Van Horne Legion and Auxiliary we would like to thank everyone for coming out this evening. It is in remembrance and celebration that we honor the legacy of a great man this evening, Van Horne Patriot Marty Junge. Marty had a way of bringing people together to enjoy a good time, and it is in that same spirit that we celebrate and remember, not mourn, as he would have wanted.
Marty spent many days with a purpose to make Van Horne a town all of us would be proud to call our home, and that is now a burden that falls on each of us. Marty was a big believer in giving back to his town and community in order to impact generations to come. That is now our responsibility as we try and fill the void that is left. I ask each of you here to try and step out of your comfort zone and do something to impact this town in remembrance of Marty.
We have many great organizations in this town and becoming involved is a great place to start. Organizations like the Lion’s Club, the Firefighters and First Responders, the American Legion, Sons of the Legion, Legion Auxiliary, Van Horne Recreation Committee, The Van Horne Business Group, Van Horne Garden Club, Multiple Church groups just to name some of the organizations in town doing great things.
I understand not everyone is able to join a group so another way to honor Marty is to get to know your neighbors and members of this town. A great quality of Marty’s was he never met a stranger, and we as a community shouldn’t be strangers. Say ‘Hi’ to people throughout town, strike up a conversation, invite them over for a cold beverage, take a little time out of your day to better someone else’s. Getting to know people throughout the town and helping each other is ultimately what Marty strived for this town to be: ‘One Big Family.’
I hope Kris, Nate, Noah, Megan, and the entire Junge family understand what Marty meant to this town and the countless number of lives Marty bettered through his sacrifices to give so much of his time to the improvement of Van Horne. With that I hope you enjoy the evening through socialization, but start tomorrow with a purpose to better this town we call home in remembrance of Marty.
I am ending with a quote I stole from the great Mags that he wrote about Marty:
“He’s gone, but his presence is still here in the projects he started and completed, and it’s in the call for community involvement. It was his life. A great neighbor, friend, colleague, and family man. We’ll miss him every day, but remember him when we think outside of ourselves to make our community or family better.”