Oct. 17—PLYMOUTH — A newly created honor will ensure that Mary Barrett, and her passion for historical preservation, won't soon be forgotten.
"Mary wanted to recognize the beauty that exists around us every day in the same special way that she saw the best in everyone," said Alexis Eroh, a member of borough council and an officer with the Plymouth Borough Planning Agency.
The Planning Agency recently established the Mary Barrett Historical Home Award in her memory. Barrett, 43, was killed earlier this year. Her husband faces charges in the case.
Eroh, said the Mary Barrett Historical Home Award program was established to celebrate the beautiful historic houses of Plymouth and to honor Barrett, a dedicated member of the Planning Agency who loved the historical buildings of Plymouth and invested time and energy to the restoration of her own historical home.
"The Planning Agency will award one home per quarter," Eroh said. "You can nominate your own home, or that of a friend or neighbor, as long as the home is located within the boundaries of Plymouth Borough."
Eroh said the first award will be decided by the Planning Agency in December and announced at the January council meeting. Nominations will roll over quarter-to-quarter so no need to re-nominate each quarter, Eroh said.
The Planning Agency was established by Plymouth Borough in 2020 to promote revitalization within the borough. It is a seven-member body of Plymouth residents.
"Mary Barrett was one of the original members and had many ideas related to the restoration of historical homes in Plymouth, and how we could tie that into the revitalization plan," Eroh said. "She made many friendships in Plymouth based on a shared love of historic restoration."
Eroh said the Planning Agency developed the award as a way to honor her legacy and love for Plymouth.
"While we are struggling with many blighted properties in our community, this award is a great opportunity to celebrate those residents who have dedicated their time and resources into making Shawnee shine again. We are hoping that inspiration is contagious, causing others to embark on their own restoration journeys."
For more information, go to the Plymouth Borough Facebook page.
Barrett died Jan. 11, and her husband, Daniel Barrett, faces an open count of criminal homicide. Daniel Barrett allegedly surrendered when he showed up at the Plymouth Police station Jan. 11, admitting he killed his wife in a fit of jealousy inside their home at 103 Gaylord Ave., according to police.
Shortly after her death, members of the community gathered to mourn the loss of a friend, a family member, a colleague and a treasured part of the Plymouth Borough family.
A candlelight vigil was held outside the Faith Baptist Church to honor the memory of Barrett. Close to 50 people showed up to the church to pay their respects and share memories of Barrett, while even more people watched at home via Facebook.
"She was such a kind and caring soul," said Plymouth Borough Councilman Adam Morehart, who helped to organize the vigil. "She was always the first to want to give back to the community."
Mayor Frank Coughlin said Barrett worked as the borough secretary for roughly a year.
"She took to the job so easily," Coughlin said. "I know she's looking down on us."
From there, person after person stepped up to share their love of Barrett, making it abundantly clear just how loved she was by the community.
At the vigil, Barrett's smile was a constant theme — just about everyone said she had a constant smile on her face, and was always more than happy to help the community, whether through her work as borough secretary or as a part of Plymouth Alive.
It was a poignant tribute to someone that had made such a massive impact on Plymouth in a relatively short span of time.
Reach Bill O'Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.