The Pope Family Garden at North Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville, Georgia is a small restorative space where patients and visitors can find a moment of calm and serenity. The Garden is a gift from Richard and Lona Pope and their family and it honors the family's legacy of service and volunteerism.
In 2013, the Pope family commissioned a water feature for the garden. We created the fountain with sculpted water lilies seen below. The fountain utilizes reclaimed water and patients with rooms above the garden catch glimpses of prisms throughout the day.
Last year, we were saddened to hear of the passing of Richard Pope at age 79. Throughout his life, Mr. Pope was generous with his time and service. According to his obituary:
In honor of his mother, the late Ocie Rich Pope, founder of the Hall School of Nursing (now the Brenau School of Nursing) and charter member of the Hall County Hospital Auxiliary, Richard served as the first male member and treasurer of the Auxiliary Board for 13 years. He also served as a board member of The Medical Center Foundation where he and his wife, Lona, served as co-chairs of the Laurel Society.
Earlier this spring, we were honored when Mrs. Pope asked us to create a sculpture in memory of Richard.
Mr. Pope was known to be an avid reader, who could often be found with a book in his hand. The Popes even had a small library outside their home. When he was a child, a family member gave him the nickname "Frog". So a frog, happily reading and relaxing on a bench, seemed a fitting tribute to commemorate Richard's life in this lovely setting.
Creating this sculpture was a lot of fun.
Although we were sad to let him leave the shop, the frog now lives happily at NGMC. To carry on the tradition of sharing a love of reading, the Pope family even had a small library built for the garden, echoing the one outside their Hall County home.
Both the frog and the tiny library are daily reminders of the curious mind and generous spirit of a remarkable man.