Alumnus and retiree Henry “Hank” Roenke III ’73 was celebrated by the city of Geneva recently for his work to locate and repair marble markers and catalog monuments in a local cemetery.
City Council adopted a resolution declaring Thursday, Nov. 5 as “Hank Roenke Day.” Mayor Steve Valentino said Hank logged “a staggering 615 trips and 2,140 hours of volunteer service” in a section of the Glenwood Cemetery that was relocated from a burial site on Pulteney Street in 1920 to construct the former Geneva High School (now the site of the FLCC Geneva Campus Center). In the years since the relocation, the headstones have become worn, and in some cases, have sunk into the ground.
“He has completed a tremendous amount of research on the people buried there and routinely logs dates for the historical society’s archives,” the resolution said of Hank’s work. “If that wasn’t enough, he even mows the grass in that section on a regular basis.”
Hank received the CCFL/FLCC Exceptional Service Award in 2017. After earning his associate degree in natural resources conservation from Community College of the Finger Lakes, as the College was called before 1992, he attended Empire State College and then worked as a conservation specialist at FLCC from 1974 to 2001, when he was granted emeritus status.
For over 30 years, Hank developed and managed Geneva’s Loomis Woods Nature Trail, often enlisting the help of FLCC conservation students and local Cub and Boy Scouts. For 13 years, he served as a member of the Alumni Association Council, including two years as its president. He also served on the FLCC Association Board of Directors for 10 years, with two terms as president.