A local historian, a late business-community advocate and a successful Little League Team all earned plaudits Aug. 29 from the Vienna Town Council.
Council members honored local historian Leigh Kitcher, who was a driving force behind the inaugural Liberty Amendments Month celebration last year.
Kitcher put in more than 1,000 volunteer hours developing a concept put forth by Town Manager Mercury Payton, resulting in a successful program with 65 events witnessed by more than 22,000 people.
The town held a second Liberty Amendments Month this year and the event “continues to make the Vienna community stronger through a celebration of history and equality in our nation,” according to the resolution, which was read aloud by Vienna Mayor Linda Colbert.
Kitcher has been a community leader and volunteer for more than three decades, serving on the boards of Historic Vienna Inc., Ayr Hill Garden Club and National Capital Area Garden Club. Her “extraordinary” contributions through Liberty Amendments Month have helped “strengthen cultural values, bring the community together to foster mutual respect and understanding, and to preserve heritage and history in Vienna,” Colbert read.
“We are very thankful that you care so much about our town,” Colbert said.
Kitcher said about 95 other people also helped bring the event to fruition. While doing research for the celebration, Kitcher said she came to appreciate in new ways the 13th, 14th, 15th and 19th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
“These amendments guarantee our liberty,” she said. “Let’s celebrate them and remember how important they are to each and every one of us.”
The Council also issued a proclamation in honor of late Town Business Liaison Committee chairman Robert Leggett. A U.S. Coast Guard Academy distinguished alumnus, former Central Intelligence Agency analyst and senior executive, and youth-basketball coach, Leggett died July 16 at age 80.
Leggett “actively helped connect struggling businesses with resources to help them survive COVID-related economic hardship,” the resolution read. “Bob is widely remembered for his leading the [commission] through a transition period by helping to define its evolving role in the town’s economic development.”
Finally, the Town Council recognized the Vienna American Little League 11-Year-Old All-Star team (The Big Red Machine) for this summer winning the Southeast Region Championship, which is the highest level for that age group. The only other time a Vienna Little League team won that championship was 1972, Colbert said.
“The whole town was behind you,” said the mayor, who presented the team with a plaque. “You were good teammates and you worked really hard, and those two things I think even supersede the winning.”