The Living Magazines

Hyde Park Living .....Hyde Park, Oakley, Mt. Lookout, O'Bryonville and East Walnut Hills
Wyoming Living
Indian Hill Living
Fort Thomas Living

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Who Are the People in Your Neighborhood? Generations

Lippelman-Corley-Campbell: Building Community for Four Generations
By Cynthia Smith
After Mary Corley won Citizen of the Year in 1986 for giving countless hours to over a dozen Wyoming organizations, she could have justifiably taken a break from volunteering.
But Oliver Road’s Energizer Bunny was just getting started. Since then, Mary has taught senior fitness at the Wyoming Recreation Center for 11 years, served the Valley Interfaith Community Resource Center (VICRC) for 26, and sat on the board of the Wyoming Art Show for 30.  

The Corley and Campbell families, from left to right, Carolyn Campbell, Erin Campbell, Jerry Campbell, Samantha Campbell, Christopher Campbell, Ralph Corley, Mary Corley, Adrian Corley, Hildegund Corley, Henry Corley, and Matthew Corley. 
Mary’s family has been making its mark on Wyoming since 1899, when her father, Walter Lippelman, started at Wyoming High School (WHS). It took him a while to settle down - he didn’t marry until he was 50 - but when Mary was born, he built a house on West Hill Lane so his daughter could be a Cowboy too!

Destined to Stay
She must have been destined to stay in Wyoming, because Mary met future husband Ralph Corley at a party given by mutual friends. He was sharing a rental house on Compton Road near Poage Farm with three of his General Electric (GE) colleagues. Then, instead of getting transferred as expected, Ralph was able to keep working at GE’s Evendale location after he and Mary wed in 1959. 

So after five years of marriage, the Corleys put down roots, building a house on a vacant lot at the corner of Oliver and Brayton. Their unusual home - with bedrooms below street level -was a custom Pease plan built by Ralph Brazington, uncle of Wyoming’s Bob Wettingale. Bob was the foreman.
For the next 19 years, Mary built community, donating her free time to Ascension and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, the Civic Center (when it was privately owned), the Wyoming Women’s Club, Promote Wyoming, and the Historical Society. When children came along (Matthew was born in 1960 and Carolyn in 1964), Mary added the Parent School Association (PSA), May Fete, and other school projects to her resume.

Back to “Neighborly” Wyoming
Ralph retired from GE in 1992, the year Carolyn married Jerry Campbell of Clifton. The newlyweds first lived in White Oak, but when they didn’t find it be as neighborly as they wanted, Carolyn contacted a realtor to search for something they could afford in Wyoming. The day they moved to Fleming Meadows (where they now live in their second Wyoming house), many neighbors gathered in their yard to welcome them.

Today, Jerry and Carolyn’s three children are making their own way in the world. Christopher graduated from WHS in 2012, Erin in 2015, and Samantha in 2017. Jerry is a WHS coach.
Ralph plays golf, paints watercolors, makes repairs on the Corley and Campbell houses, and serves as treasurer of the Art Show. Mary, you guessed it, still volunteers. 

Son Matthew, a 1978 Wyoming graduate, has lived in Germany for 34 years. He earned his Doctorate of Engineering and now works for Ford Motors in Cologne. He and his family come home to Wyoming for a few weeks every year. 

“Most of the People are Like Us”
The Corleys like Wyoming for lots of reasons. “Most of the people are like us,” says Mary, “educated, involved in the community. We feel safe here and appreciate the beauty.” Ralph adds, “Friends who leave are always calling their new community ‘kind of like Wyoming,’ but there is an unspoken ‘almost.’ Quite a few who grew up here have come back.”

Some things have changed, but Mary and Ralph feel the city has been well run for the most part. Mary tells a story illustrating changing attitudes: “Back in the ‘80s when the Kmart closed, Dory Ach, who created Wyoming Living, thought the property should become a new combined Recreation/Civic Center for Wyoming. But at the time, people thought it was too close to Woodlawn. Now what do we have? A Rec Center in Woodlawn! But the City got a sweet deal on the Gross YMCA, so that worked out, and the Kmart property became new homes.”

Mary and Ralph wish there was a place like Maple Knoll in Wyoming, so that if they need help as they grow older they can still live here. Until then, the couple will no doubt stay as involved as ever, inspiring generations to build community every day.

No comments:

Post a Comment