The first thing you will see when you enter the ‘Garden of Memories’ at C Street and Union Avenue is a statue of a young cowboy, head thrown back, riding his bucking bronco.
The statue is of Wallace ‘Wally” Stealey, a man well-known in Pueblo who through his lifetime wore many hats, not just that of cowboy.
“He was also a Marine, a musician, an educator, a mentor” says his proud wife Sharon, married to Wally Stealey for almost sixty years before he died in 2017. He was also the man who launched political careers for many Pueblo Democrats and lobbied for the interests of his community in the state legislature.
On a humid Monday afternoon, Sharon Stealey was memorializing her husband with bright flowers at the ‘Garden of Memories.’
She got some help from two men she had only met the Friday before.
Mario Trujillo is the pastor at City Church and Junior Molina is a parishioner. They had never met Wallace Stealey. They however did have one thing in common with him, the desire to do something for the good of the community.
Ken Wood, pastor at Avenue Church called Mayor Nick Gradisar asking about community projects local congregations might become involved with. The mayor suggested the Stealey memorial. Wood talked with Trujillo who asked Molina to join him.
Trujillo says giving something to the community is important to City Church. It has been active in the past through feeding the homeless and holiday events for children. The group volunteering in the planting may have been small, but that did not faze Trujillo.
“It’s the little things that count he says.” Tujillo and Molina say once all the flowers are planted, they will continue over the next months to care for them.
So as the flowers that Sharon Stealey plant bloom over the summer, they will provide a colorful remembrance to a man who led a very colorful life and continue to give a bit of beauty to the city he loved.