painted by John Ford in 1976, depicts the artist's memory of summer visits
with his grandfather, Walter Ford, at his grandparents' Riverdale Park
John Ford, who
died in 1996 at
age 42, painted the mural on a large
board affixed to the side of what used to be a consignment shop. He added an overhang at the top to protect the
mural from the weather, says Riverdale Park Mayor Ann Ferguson.
Riverdale Park officials fought in 1998 to preserve the mural
after an Eckerd's Drugstore proposed demolishing the building to open a new store.
Residents protested and eventually won
the battle to keep the mural and the building. Ferguson says in October 2000
the municipality purchased the land underneath the mural to plant flowers
and build a small park. For now, the mural will not be torn
an identifying marker," Ferguson says. "When Eckerd's
Drugstore threatened that corner (East-West Highway and Baltimore Avenue), a lot of people from the surrounding area
"They said, 'I count on that mural when I see it. When I see
it, I know I am in Riverdale Park.' "