Inspiration

Founder and Former President Sue Casey shares her thoughts on her inspiration for creating the Gardens

On September 11, 2001, the citizens of the United States of America were brought to their knees by terrorists who attacked the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon, and caused the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 in a field in Shade Township, Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

After that fateful day, I had been thinking and praying about what could be done for the victims and survivors. The answer came to me on September 26, 2001. A member of Central Lutheran Church in Portland, Oregon, I was leaving our Wednesday Taize service, walking to my car and thinking, "God, you are going to have to guide me on this one. I don't have a clue as to how I could help." When I reached my car and started to unlock the door, for some reason I looked up and there was a beautiful yellow rose. The thought came to mind: rose garden!

"Portland is the City of Roses", I thought to myself, "I'll create a rose garden!" There were tree roses and rose bushes lining the curb where I had parked my car. When I got in the car, I sat for a minute or two and then the thought came to my mind: "Remember Me."

Saying the words aloud sounded corny, but as I drove home, I tried to think of other names. However, those two words kept coming back. As I pulled into our driveway, I knew that the rose garden had its name.