The following information was submitted in a press release.
Shelby Township officials are offering the community a unique look into the construction of Chief Gene
Shepherd Park on 23 Mile Road.
As features such as sand volleyball courts and fire station playgrounds begin to take shape, the Township is documenting every facet of the construction through a photo album titled “Construction of Chief Gene Shepherd Park” on the Charter Township of Shelby Facebook page.
“Chief Gene Shepherd Park belongs to the people, and we want to give them the same experience of watching a home renovation as this park moves forward,” said Treasurer Michael Flynn, noting that construction has been funded through alternative revenues such as private donations and cable TV income, with no use of taxpayer funds.
The park, named after former Fire Chief Gene Shepherd, who passed following a battle with cancer in 2012, will celebrate two of Shepherd‘s passions ‐‐ family and his brothers and sisters in the Fire Department.
“It really is a great tribute to a great man that we have a family‐friendly park with Gene Shepherd’s name on it,” Fire Chief Jim Swinkowski said after touring the renovations of the park’s new clubhouse area.
“With soccer fields, tennis courts, volleyball courts, playgrounds and even bocce ball courts, this park will offer something for every generation to enjoy together. And I know Gene would appreciate that.”
“Whether it’s a family reunion, picnic or relaxing together after the kids’ soccer match, this park will help bring families closer together,” said Flynn, who has overseen the project as a member of the Parks and Recreation Committee.
The online photo album includes pictures from the park’s groundbreaking earlier this year, and will feature periodic updates and culminate with the grand opening later this year.
“Part of the reason this project has moved so well is because of the love and respect our community has for Chief Shepherd,” Township Supervisor Rick Stathakis said. “His leadership always inspired others to set aside their differences and work together, and this park construction has been a tribute to that.”