Sat, Feb. 22

One more step toward a new library

Courtesy photo

Mary Lyons was a member of the Goodwill Circle and left the Camp Verde Library funds after years of service.

Mary Lyons, a lover of books and the Camp Verde Library, left the library a huge monetary gift, according to Library Director Gerry Laurito.

"We're putting it into a special account for use to purchase land for a new library or to help with construction," he explained.

Lyons, a former teacher, who lived in Camp Verde on and off throughout her lifetime, named a sizeable annuity in the library's name upon her death. Laurito said that when they received word in February, they filled out all the appropriate papers and "10 days later received a check for $129,000."

"Mary Lyons was a pioneer family in this area," explained Terry Ellison. Ellison who has a 25-year history with the library; 13 years as a volunteer and eight as assistant librarian said she knew the deceased benefactor well.

"When I first knew her, she was a member of the Good Will Circle, the ladies that started the library in 1958. They ran it until the town became incorporated. It grew each year. They handed over a very nice library to the town. She was a member of that organization as I was. She helped with the fund raising. She was also a Bagdad teacher. When she retired, she returned to Camp Verde and got involved with the circle again. She was also a volunteer in the library for many years."

She said Lyons was responsible for oral histories and wrote articles for the newspaper on behalf of the library as well as co-authoring "By the Banks of Beaver Creek."

"She had foresight. She loved the library and always used to say, 'one day you'll need a new library and you'll need money,'" Ellison added.

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