Phyllis Marion Middleton lived her life as a beloved teacher and community servant in Pleasant Garden, North Carolina. She was a lifelong member; from baptism to marriage to eulogy at Pleasant Garden Baptist Church. As a fitting tribute to Phyllis after her passing in 2015, the congregation came together to design and landscape a memorial garden.
At the same time, church service veterans were planning a memorial to honor veterans. Thus, the two plans became one and resulted in The Phyllis Marion Middleton Memorial Garden and Veteran’s Memorial.
The garden found a home in a grassy space between the church sanctuary and its office, that is also prominently forward on the campus for a pleasing view from the street and as you approach. It’s become a space for church activities, including weddings.
The church provides engraved tribute pavers for donors to the garden. It’s easy to remove pavers one at a time and replace them with engraved brick as tributes are added.
“Phyllis was a person everyone loved in the community. She lived her life in the church she loved so much that we felt a memorial to her was fitting.”—Tim Marion
The Marion family owns Marion Tile & Flooring around the corner from the church. Phyllis’ brother, Tim, and her father, Philip Marion., directed the project.
“My dad was here every day for the duration of the project, acting as project manager,” said Tim Marion. “And church members pitched in along with subcontractors to build a drainage system, select and plant greenery and install the pavers.”
“The idea for this garden was inspired from the outpouring of love shown to the Marion and Middleton families at the passing of Phyllis,” said Marion. “We came up with the idea and acted as project managers to see it through. Now it’s something the entire community can enjoy for many years.”
Churches and civic organizations find paver projects affordable and feasible. Paver hardscapes make excellent Eagle Scout projects. For more information on how you can start such a project, contact us. To see more photos, visit our Pinterest page.