PAWTUCKET â€“ Like the memorial trees at the center of its purpose, the popularity of the Tree in Memorial program in Slater Park just kept growing and growing. But sometimes success can bring its own set of challenges.
When city Recreation Director John Blais inherited the program from his predecessor William Mulholland, who started it, he realized it had outgrown the paper records way of keeping track of where the trees were, who donated them and in whose name.
CENTRAL FALLS â€” Fundraising for a project, especially in tough economic times, is always challenging. But when the project centers around someone as universally liked as the cityâ€™s late fire chief, Rene Coutu, the task becomes a lot easier.
Coutu, who served as fire chief for 25 years, died on Dec. 7, 2010, at the age of 60 after a battle with cancer. Now, longtime friend and Ward 2 City Councilor Robert Ferri wants to have a city park dedicated to Coutuâ€™s memory.
â€śIâ€™ve known Rene a long time, and heâ€™s a guy so deserving of something in this city,â€ť said Ferri.