Tuesday, August 20, 2013
ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST PARISH – A ribbon cutting ceremony was held on Wednesday, August 15, 2013 to commemorate the renaming of the REGALA Park Pool as the “Alex Roland Reese Swimming Pool” in honor of a 23 year old Reserve resident who accidentally drowned in the pool on May 27, 1978. The pool renaming is a reminder to the community of the importance of water safety and swimming instruction for our residents.
Parish President Natalie Robottom and some of her staff, Councilman Larry Snyder, Parks and Recreation Acting Director Debra Poche, and the family and friends of Reese attended the ceremony. Pastor Julius E. Ellis, a neighbor and family friend, delivered the invocation. Refreshments were served after the ceremony in REGALA Gym.
Councilman Snyder spearheaded the renaming effort to pay tribute to his former student who loved his family and the community. Councilman Snyder also coached Reese in football at Leon Godchaux High School. “I know he would be proud to see how wonderful his mother is doing and how successful and intelligent his daughter has grown to be,” said Snyder.
Reese’s daughter, Tanika Michelle, was only six months old at the time of her father’s accident. “Witnessing the pool renamed after my father is very exciting and emotional for me,” said Tanika Reese-Adams. “I am looking forward to being able to visit and remember and cherish him here.”
Parish President Robottom approached the renaming ceremony with optimism for the future. “Today, in honor of Alex Roland Reese, this ceremony is an opportunity to express the need for all of our children to learn about water safety and to learn to swim,” said Parish President Robottom. “For the second year in a row, we are partnering with the Red Cross to provide free swimming lessons for 150 children. It is a small price to pay for life-long reward.”