The Perry Historic Preservation Commission has announced the four recipients of its 2015 commission plaques of honor. The plaques will be awarded at a ceremony May 2 at 2 p.m. at Spring Valley Assisted Living in Perry.
Three of the plaques will be awarded posthumously and accepted by family members of the honorees, with the fourth plaque going to James R. Haas of Perry. Born in 1922, Haas is a 1940 graduate of Perry High School who distinguished himself during World War II as a bombardier in the 398th Bomb Group of the U.S. Army Air Corps.
Haas has participated in the “Timeless Voices of Aviation” project as well as many Perry High School Veterans Day programs. He retired after 40 years as the senior vice president and trust officer at Perry State Bank. A longtime supporter of Perry High School athletic and cultural programs, Haas is a well-liked and highly respected lifetime resident of Perry.
A posthumous plaque will be awarded to the family of George P. Soumas (1915-1994), one of Perry’s great benefactor. Since his family arrived in Perry in 1924, Soumas brought honor and improvement to the town.
From Captain Soumas’ Distinguished Service Award in World War II to his multiple terms as Perry mayor, his contributions to Perry Underwater Rescue modernization, his work to establish Iowa Highway 141 as a four-lane highway between Granger and Perry and his years as a successful attorney and judge, George Soumas has long been one of Perry’s most popular citizens.
Clarence L. “Jack” Hawn (1918-2004) will also be honored posthumously with a Perry Historic Preservation Commission plaque. Hawn was a second-generation filling station owner and operator well known as a businessman of honesty and integrity.
Hawn served the Perry community on the Perry City Council for several years and through promotion of the construction of the McCreary Community Building in 1983. He also had a passionate interest is supporting the athletic and cultural programs of Perry High School.
The last posthumous plaque will honor the Marckres family, which has been active in Perry’s civic and commercial life for more than 150 years. Honored will be Sam Marckres (1843-1902), Charles D. Marckres (1874-1933) and Harry P. Marckres (1877-1937).
The Marckres family has been operating successful businesses, constructing new buildings, supporting local athletic and civic organizations and promoting Perry from the time before Harry Marckres’ part in making Perry’s first motion picture in 1924 right on through the family’s lumber, coal, shoe, ice cream and Spring Valley Wireless businesses.
The May 2 awards ceremony if free and open to the public. The Perry Historic Preservation Commission’s 2014 honorees were Paul Graves, Bill Simmer, Tom Quinlan and Bill Graney. Commission members include John Palmer, Ronda Onken, Judy Marckres, Jeanette Peddicord, Eugene Peel, Gary Martin and Jim Von Behren.