The Billy Schulz Memorial Prayer Garden Fund

We have had so many people ask us what we would like in lieu of flowers as a Memorial for Billy Schulz. I am putting the information here because I cannot possibly answer all of the requests.

Since the First Broad Street United Methodist Church in Kingsport, Tennessee was such a big part of Billy’s life and because we would love to have a living memorial for Billy that can be shared by others, we have established a fund with the church that will be dedicated to the construction of a prayer garden in Billy’s memory.

Billy loved his church and one of his main joys in life was being an usher for the services.

Billy’s memorial service will be held at the church at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 8. I don’t think the venue will be large enough. People are coming from all over the country.

 Donations for the garden may be sent to:

First Broad St. UMC

100 E. Church Circle

Kingsport, Tn. 37660

A plaque will be erected listing all donors

 Billy’s obituary may be found on Billy’s web blog, The Saddest Post in the Whole Wide World

Billy-Schulz-A kind, loving, and courageous Gentleman (pic In2Wit LLC)

Billy-Schulz-A kind, loving, and courageous Gentleman (pic In2Wit LLC)

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Billy Schulz–A kind, Loving, and Courageous Gentleman

Billy Schulz passed away on Sunday, September 2, 2012. Billy loved everyone he ever met and was standing ready to love those he had yet to meet. He was a pioneer in the field of Special Needs. Billy will be missed by many people all over the world. He touched a lot of people and changed a lot of attitudes and lives.

A memorial service will be held for Billy in Kingsport, Tennessee on Saturday, September 8. I hope the meeting hall will be big enough.

You may read all about Billy if you visit the website GROWN MAN NOW

John, Jane, and Billy Schulz

John, Jane, and Billy Schulz

The following article was published on January 28, 2012

In my family, January 28 has been the most important day of the year for the last fifty five years. Fifty five years ago was when Billy Schulz first realized that there was a special day that was just for him. For fifty five years, according to Billy and lots of others, This date has been bigger than Christmas.

Billy will be 56 years old Saturday. Dekie and I will be in Kingsport to join in the festivities and the celebration. This year, there is an additional celebration in that this past week, Billy received a very special award from his employer, Food City, where he was recognized for ten years of service to the company. Here’s a picture of Billy with his ten year pin. It has diamonds and rubies. Billy looks happy. Congratulations are in order.

Billy Schulz shows his 10-year service pin from Food City, January 23,  © 2012 Mary de Wit
Billy Schulz shows his 10-year service pin from Food City, January 23, © 2012 Mary de Wit

I remember a few years ago when there was a really big birthday party for Billy’s fiftieth. People came from all over the world to be with him on the special day. They came from New York, Iowa, and even from Japan. What a party that was.

I think the best thing about having watched Billy for the past half a century and more has been seeing a man use his given talents to the maximum. His social skills are amazing, and he has never met a stranger. Billy loves everyone he meets and he distributes his gift of joy wherever he goes. He is truly a special person.

At the time Billy was born, people didn’t know much about Down syndrome. Billy and his mother, Jane were pioneers in the field of special education. His mother earned a doctorate in special education and taught at Western Carolina University for many years. Billy has given talks and slide presentations all over the country.

I love the way Billy tells his own story. He wrote his own article for his birthday in which he said,

“I am born,January 28, 1956. And now I BE 56. That is the same number. Hunh. I like that.

Now I not be 55 any more. But I like that, be 55. It is a good year. But I be 56, now that’s bether!

Now I going to be a old, old man. But I like it.

You know what? Alan Alda born on January 28. Plays on M.A.S.H. I like that show, and it is so funny.”

You may read the rest of Billy’s article IF YOU CLICK HERE

And here’s another part of the celebration: Billy and his mother, Jane B. Schulz wrote a book, Grown Man Now that tells all about growing up and dealing with the talents he was given. This most interesting memoir goes into great depth in relating the story of Billy, his family, and especially his parents as they deal with the problems and joys of his life. You may read about the book and purchase an autographed copy from the publisher with free shipping by clicking here. If you know someone who is dealing with Down syndrome or other disabilities, do them a favor and suggest the book.

Grown Man Now, A memoir by Jane B. Schulz
Grown Man Now, A memoir by Jane B. Schulz

I really like the picture on the cover of the book. Dad was a devoted advocate for Billy and helped him whenever he needed help. After Dad had a stroke the tables turned and Billy became the care giver and helper.

You can even be friends with Billy Schulz on face book. He’s the one fromKingsport,Tennessee.

So, one more time: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BILLY. I have a wonderful brother.

I wrote another article about Billy and why the book Redemption for a Redneck was dedicated to him. You may read that article here

The Day of the garden tour– Part eight of a series

 I know, I’m late with this final article in the series. I was talking with Patsy Hubbard the other day and she said, “John I hope you know that you must write the final article of the tour series.” I felt like I hadn’t done my homework and I started to tell her that the dog ate it, but the real reason I’m late is that I needed to go to Tennessee and visit with my mother. It was a day or so after her 87th birthday. We planted some calla lily bulbs in her garden and had a nice visit. Here’s a picture of Mom, my brother, Billy, and me on the way to church. Mom has a lovely yard, too. (To see all of the articles in this series, Click Here.

John, Jane, and Billy Schulz

John, Jane, and Billy Schulz

Back to the tour. Lots and lots of people showed up. I was sorry that I didn’t get to visit the other homes on the tour, but I had a really good time visiting with friends and meeting lots of new people. I drank a little tea while sitting under the pergola in the morning but I didn’t get to sit much after that

The mandevilla will reach the top of the trellis in a month.

The mandevilla will reach the top of the trellis in a month.

It was a beautiful day. The clouds added accents to the marvelous view without obscuring it. Here’s the front fountain with the view in the background:

waterfall,flowerbed, and view

waterfall,flowerbed, and view

There are lots of urns around the house. I really loved the shape and beauty of this begonia. What a find.

begonia container at entrance

begonia container at entrance

The rear entrance to the back porch looked inviting. Chipmunks had messed up the plantings the night before and I had to do some really quick fixing.

stone steps to patio

stone steps to patio

I love this view down the front pathway. A lot of people commented on and asked about the Cephalotaxus, (plum yew).

front flagstone pathway

front flagstone pathway

I enjoy putting little container accents here and there as a surprise.

container accents

container accents

Some (but not all) of the roses I had pruned to delay flowering had come back in bloom right on time. I didn’t really get the show I wanted from the roses—but you know what I said in an earlier article—“No guts, no glory.” 

roses blooming just in time

roses blooming just in time

 The sitting area under the trellis was put together by Laurie Hubbard and Ramona Fricks. It was well used as the day went by.

sitting area under trellis

sitting area under trellis

One of the things I like about this garden is the way in which the accent plantings blend in with the grander vistas from the mountain top. I wasn’t the only one who enjoyed it, either.

enjoying the view from the mountain

enjoying the view from the mountain

The man who built this bridge was the inspiration for my novel, Requiem for a Redneck. The book tells about the details involved such a project. RIP, Ottis, you would have been proud.

bridge and fountain

bridge and fountain

All in all, it was a wonderful day. I loved the girl with the umbrella.  

A good time

A good time

To read about Johntheplantman and the rednecks,  As usual, I would just love for you click here to go to Amazon and purchase the ebook edition of my wonderful book, Requiem for a Redneck to go on your Kindle. I have also noticed that Amazon now has a free Kindle app for iphones and tablets. Is that cool or what?   If you want a consultation in your yard in N.W. Georgia, send me an email at wherdepony@bellsouth.net

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Now available as an ebook at Amazon–read it on your Kindle

Requiem for a Redneck--A novel by John P. Schulz

Check out more adventures of John the plant man in this hilarious yet sensitive award winning novel

Grown Man Now

Billy Schulz, Grown Man Now

My favorite blog by Dr. Jane Schulz and Billy

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