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Lions Club celebrates 70th anniversary

Feb. 10, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Barboursville Lions Club member Lennie Rowe was far and away from his native Point Pleasant, W.Va., in the late 1970s as a member of the U.S. Navy when he learned his little brother had to get glasses.

He didn't think much of it at the time, but when he returned home, he learned his brother got a little bit of help in finding his new, clearer vision.

"I didn't know it until I was out of the Navy, but I discovered the Lions Club in Point Pleasant paid for my brother's eye exam and supplemented a portion of the cost for his eyeglasses," said Rowe. "That was all I needed to know. It was easy to accept my invitation into the club after that."

Rowe currently is the longest-serving member of the Barboursville Lions Club, which celebrated its 70th anniversary Saturday night with a gathering at the Barboursville Holiday Inn and Suites.

During the event, local and district members took a walk down memory lane, revisiting the history of the club, which received its charter in January 1943, said Charlie Buzzard, president of the Barboursville club.

The international organization, which is known for its focus on eye care and vision correction, is known locally for its contributions in the form of scholarships for graduating seniors, supporting local Boy and Girl Scout troops and Hospice in addition to supporting a variety of community-based projects and organizations through fundraising. The Barboursville club hosts three pancake breakfasts each year which serve as the club's primary fundraisers, said Buzzard.

"I hope our members and our community get gratification in knowing all of the hard work contributed by club members through the club's history," Buzzard said. "This is one of the most active clubs in West Virginia, and we would like to keep it that way for a long time."

For more information about the Barboursville Lions Club, visit www.e-clubhouse.org/sites/barboursville.

Follow Lacie Pierson via Twitter @LaciePiersonHD.

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