Remembering our Children (R.O.C.) Park Coming to Madeira Beach
Losing a child can be the most painful thing a parent endures. No matter the age, it never goes away.
A new memory park is going to be a part of the new Madeira Beach municipal complex opening in January 2015. Parents who have lost children to miscarriage, illness, accident or for any other reason can purchase a brick or a bench in this park to have their child remembered in positive and happy way.
Local parents, Bill and Diane Karns, know that pain all too well after the loss of their son, William. In their search for healing and a way to honor his memory, they were inspired to build a park not only for their child, but for other children. The idea became a quick reality thanks to the openness of the City of Madeira Beach, where leaders were more than supportive to include a memory park for children in the design of their new municipal complex currently being built along the shores of Boca Ciega Bay.
The Karns started R.O.C. Park Inc., a non-profit organization, along with their two daughters Nikki and Paige, to raise the funds needed to build the park. “R.O.C. Park will be a celebration of the lives of children who are no longer with us. This will not be a solemn setting. The splash pad feature within the park will be a place for children to play and have fun. The adjacent recreation center and baseball fields will be full of excitement and entertainment for many children in the community. That’s what this is about: turning the tragedy of loss into a celebration of life in a positive manner. My son loved children and I’m sure he is proud to see this park become a reality for families and the community to enjoy,” said Bill Karns
Other families are invited to share their memories as a permanent part of the new park. Brick pavers, benches, tree adoptions, sitting pods, love locks, and memorial rocks are available for a donation in memory of a child who has passed. These items will be placed throughout the park, with brick pavers surrounding the waterfall feature, splash pad, butterfly garden and “Love Lock Tree.” For more information, to make a donation, or to adopt a memorial item visit www.rocpark.com