Man restores fountain at Blue Grass Memorial Gardens with special meaning behind it

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 4:53 PM EDT
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JESSAMINE COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - The Garden of the Fountain was first constructed back in the late 1980s by Mike Stephens, and after so many years it started to show its age and wasn’t working properly.

“The pond was immediately on my list to have upgraded or refurbished of course with some other things,” said Phil Wilburn, the general manager at Blue Grass Memorial Gardens. “I did reach out to a few different companies about getting that done and I really wasn’t satisfied with what I was hearing, but definitely wanted to have it done.”

That’s when Greg O’Neal, a landscape contractor and owner of Aaron’s Improvements, stepped in to offer his services, but at a significantly reduced price. But for O’Neal, the project is more than just money. Stephens was his mentor when he first started landscaping, so this was a special project.

“Being in that hole every once in a while, it felt like Mike was with me, and you know if I had to go this way or that way with a stone and it was just fun all the way around,” O’Neal said.

While restoring this fountain was a great connection back to his long-time mentor, O’Neal said finishing this fountain also means a great deal to the people who visit loved ones here in the memorial gardens.

“They were appreciative that I was restoring it. Peggy sits at a bench every Sunday for 24 straight years to visit her husband and she can see the waterfall from her bench now,” O’Neal said.

While this fountain is complete, O’Neal is looking for one last finishing detail— lily pads. Stephens has put them in all of the water features that he’s made throughout Lexington.

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