KIRKERSVILLE – Seventeen years ago Jacqui Atwell Bowers, a life-long Kirkersville resident and member of the Kirkersville United Methodist Church, asked her family and friends to install a bell carillon in the church.
Her request has now been fulfilled. The carillon was installed during Thanksgiving week last year.
The carillon project also became a priority of William “Tyler” Copley’s family. When he died in August of 2008, Tyler’s grandparents, Bill and Barbara Magley, took up the cause. Funds were set aside for the Bell Fund. A few years later after the death of their father, the family of a beloved resident and member, Leland Shomaker, added his memorial fund to the effort.
After the church Trustees and Administrative Board met with Chimemaster Company last fall, the Church learned of a generous bequest from the estate of Robert and Lucille Francis. This bequest made the carillon a reality.
Kirkersville residents have been enjoying the beautiful tolling of the bells. The bells chime and pay hymns at 9 a.m., noon and 6 p.m. The chimes strike hourly from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
A dedication service for the carillon and in memory of Jacquie Bowers, Tyler Copley, Leland Shomaker, and Robert and Lucille Francis has been set for the 10:45 a.m. service on Sunday, July 17. A complimentary picnic will be served after the morning church service. Chimemasters will present a demonstration and concert during the picnic. Anyone with a KUMC connection or who just wants to enjoy the carillon, a meal and fellowship is invited to attend.