Tom Runyan, Tyrone Township resident

 My name is Tom Runyan. Ever since we learned that the board was not going to move the old township building to the new site, I have been troubled.

 Historical Societies are formed to preserve, protect and promote the history and heritage of the community where they serve. Daniel Runyan came to Tyrone Township in 1836, one year before Michigan became a state. I’m here to ask this board to work with the Historical Society, to help and partner with us to save that building. We owe it to all the people who built, paid for and used that building, in the exercise of self-government for almost one hundred years.

 When Connie Ridell put the Tyrone Revisited history book together, she gave a voice to the people that no longer had a voice. Information from Bibles, scrapbooks, cemeteries and verbal history passed down through the generations was used to document the history of their families.

 If this Township board decides to abandon this historical artifact, shame on you. If this community allows this to happen, shame on us. At almost 80 years old, I have seen, experienced and lived a lot of history. The people who tamed this wild land in the early years and made it into the community that we enjoy today, were the greatest generation. They were simple people who didn’t have a college degree, but they worked extremely hard. Some could neither read or write. My great grandmother signed a legal document with an “x.”

 History is alive and vivid and is to be embraced and celebrated. My history is set. There is a road and lake named after me. Not bad. To the board, we want to work with you, not against you. Let us find a way to preserve this building for future generations. This is an asset of the Township, not a liability.

 We have learned many valuable lessons traveling down life’s journey. One of the things we do religiously is vote.

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