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Monument to John O'Dell dedicated

  • With other family gathered around, John's wife Marilee and John's brother Robert are forefront on either side of the monument in the photo.

    With other family gathered around, John's wife Marilee and John's brother Robert are forefront on either side of the monument in the photo.
    Jeff Jones photo

 
Harrisburg Register staff report
updated: 8/17/2022 6:48 PM

An estimated 70 people attended the dedication ceremony of the John O'Dell/River to River Trail monument at Herod Springs Baptist Church on Saturday morning.

O'Dell, who died in November, is considered the father of the River to River Trail. Through sheer effort he, his wife Marilee and others mapped each leg of the path from Battery Rock on the Ohio River to Grand Tower on the Mississippi River -- although he later lobbied to change the eastern terminus to Elizabeth, and won.

On Saturday, O'Dell's family and other friends and supporters came to the ceremony in Herod.

The monument recognizes O'Dell as the father of the River to River Trail -- something that had been talked about for decades but didn't take root until O'Dell took charge in the 1990s.

For details on the trail, visit www.rivertorivertrail.net, or write to the River To River Trail Society, 2998 Massac Creek Road, Metropolis, IL 62960.