The Elkins community remembered and will continue to honor a man who dedicated so much of his life to the betterment of the community.
Over 40 years of legacy was celebrated Saturday at the Phil Gainer Community Center Dedication. City officials, family, and friends came together to honor Phil Gainer and the impact he had on the Elkins community.
In November 2016, longtime Elkins Parks and Recreation Commission Director Phil Gainer passed away just a few short weeks before his retirement and was honored Saturday afternoon with a dedication to a project he worked tirelessly to achieve.
During his 42 years with Parks and Recreation, Gainer had a passion for the parks and for the young people in the community. He will be remembered for his hard work and continued dedication to the area.
“He is a legend of Elkins because of the commitment he had to it which is why it only makes sense that we dedicate the new community center in his honor. It’s what he would have wanted,” said Facility Manager Chris Lee.
Family and friends gathered to share stories of the impact Gainer had on their lives and his daughter is hopeful his memory will continue to flourish.
“I want people to remember who he has touched and how can make a difference not only in the past but in the future, as well,” said Taira Landavere. “My dad served 42 years in the Parks and countless times friends, family of young and old they all have been impacted by my dad in some sort of way in the Elkins community.”
Gainer set the scaffolding for opportunity and enrichment within the Elkins community and the Center will continue to strive for the goals he laid out during his time.
“Moving into year two, one of the things I am really going to be working on is how this center can really benefit the community and how we can create some programming here that will potentially relieve some of our social problems in town,” said Lee “We want to look to the future, and we want the Phil Gainer Community Center to have a very positive impact on the future.”
Elkins Parks and Recreation will partner with the Phil Gainer Community Center to see Gainer's work continue.