When Ron Berger, one of the founders of the Greater Olney Civic Association (GOCA) and a dedicated and respected leader died of cancer, his friends and community members wanted an enduring memorial. Through two generous donations to the Montgomery Parks Foundation from the Norbeck Meadows Community Association and GOCA, the playground at Norbeck Meadows Local Park was dedicated to his memory on September 8, 2012.
Long considered a local icon, Berger’s involvement with GOCA spanned more than three decades serving as president and recognized as GOCA’s Citizen of the Year in 1981 and as the recipient of GOCA’s President’s Award in 2009.
But that was just one aspect of Ron Berger’s commitment to his community. He is credited with founding the annual Olney Days festivities and served the Norbeck Meadows Civic Association; Berger was involved in Community Concerts of Olney, and chairman of Family Life Services, a group of clergy and therapists that helped people who couldn’t afford therapy.
The dedication ceremony was attended by Ron’s wife Harriet as well as other family and friends. Local officials including County Executive Ike Leggett, Director of Parks Mary Bradford, State Senator Karen Montgomery, State Delegates Ben Kramer, Craig Zucker and Eric Luedtke as well as County Council Members George Leventhal and Marc Elrich, all of whom were present to honor of a pillar of the community.