Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
Big Muddy NFWR and volunteers build a memorial to honor the late Friends President Troy Gordon
Midwest Region, June 23, 2009
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Missouri River Relief Volunteer John Brady puts the final touches on a bench next to the memorial for Troy Gordon.
Missouri River Relief Volunteer John Brady puts the final touches on a bench next to the memorial for Troy Gordon. - Photo Credit: n/a

A combination of Fish and Wildlife Service employees, Missouri River Relief staff and Friends of Big Muddy volunteers ranging from all ages gathered in the town of Arrow Rock at the Jameson Island Unit of the Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge Saturday May 23 to help construct a memorial in honor of the late Troy Gordon.


Gordon was the former president of Friends of Big Muddy and put in countless hours of volunteer work building trails, posting signs, restoring native vegetation and assisting with river cleanups on the refuge and Missouri River. Off the refuge, Gordon helped with kid fishing days in cooperation with Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Boone County, helped with judging the Junior Duck Stamp competition and took part in numerous amounts of other activities endorsing The Big Muddy NFWR.


At Gordon’s memorial event people reminisced on experiences they had working with Gordon in the past. A commemoration plaque was placed on a rock and bench was installed at the opening of the refuge’s trail in memory of Gordon. Just behind the memorial sits a bluff that was historically a landing for steamboats. “Troy always thought this would be a perfect place to install a bench,” said one volunteer. “I know he would be pleased with the end result.”


Thirty people volunteered at the event. While some worked on installing the plaque and bench, others pulled invasive species like garlic mustard, planted native species such as paw paw, helped dig a trench along the trail to control erosion and cleaned debris off a bridge on the trail.


After a hard days work, the crew broke for lunch prepared by members of  Missouri River Relief. All of the food was grown organically and collected from local farms in the area. “The entire project went very smoothly,” said Refuge Manager Tom Bell. “Everyone enjoyed working together and getting their hands dirty. It was a great way to honor Troy.”

Contact Info: Tim Haller, 573-441-2799, tim_haller@fws.gov
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