Legacy Tree planted in Hinsley’s honor

Sylvia Hinsley, with her husband Kelley, stand Friday afternoon with a legacy tree planted her honor at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park in Morristown.

A former chair of the Morristown Tree Board was honored for her service to the community last Friday.

Sylvia Hinsley had a Legacy Tree planted in her honor at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park in Morristown. Sylvia served as chair of the Morristown Tree Board for several years before recently resigning from the board before her and her husband, Kelley, leave the community.

“First, I feel honored to have this tree planted in my name, and thrilled that it will be in a place in which I have spent quite a lot of time,” Sylvia said. “I helped the master gardeners’ seed and weed the butterfly garden there at MLK Park.”

Sylvia told about her time in Morristown, beginning after her retirement from the nursing field.

“I was looking for something to enjoy after retirement from nursing,” she said. “I found volunteering at Serenity House fulfilling. I spent several years in different capacities there. It remains near and dear to my heart.”

When positions on the Tree Board and the Morristown Regional Planning Commission came available, she stepped up.

“The city needed to fill a seat on the Tree Board where I served as Chair for several years,” Sylvia said. “Soon there was an empty seat on the Planning Commission. I said, ‘Why not?’ I have enjoyed serving in each of these positions, finding that the city of Morristown is blessed with quality staff in all offices.”

The Hinsleys will move to Asheville, North Carolina to be closer to their two daughters and their children.

“We’ll partake in all that grand parenting has to offer,” Sylvia said.

Kat Morilak, development services/codes administration and community development department of the City of Morristown, reflected on Sylvia’s time with the Tree Board.

“The Tree Board voted to honor Sylvia for all her contributions to the community, but also for her work on the board as past chair, vice chair and dedicated volunteer,” Morilak said.

The Legacy Trees Project is a program of Keep Morristown-Hamblen Beautiful and The Morristown Tree Board.

Trees are a wonderful way to honor and remember loved ones. The benefits of trees to the community are too numerous to mention, but have inspired writers, poets and community leaders for generations. Trees are not only beautiful, but offer many environmental benefits.

The Legacy Trees Project was established in 2005 to honor loved ones. Loved ones may be honored through a donation that is used for planting of new trees. Trees may located in any of Morristown’s public places, such as parks, the airport or along the greenway. The donor may select the tree type and location under the guidance of the Board. A marker is installed at the tree with the name of the tree (common and scientific), the name of the person being honored and the donor.

Cost of donating a tree is a tax-deductible contribution of $200. Trees are planted typically in late fall or early spring to ensure that the trees will live. Trees are guaranteed for one year after planting. Once a Legacy Tree has been planted, it is added to a database on the tree board’s website. Each tree is assigned a number.

For more information on the Tree Board or to honor a loved one through Legacy Trees, contact Morilak at 423-585-1830.