Descendants from the Washington family met for their annual family reunion at the Point Gratiot Park in Dunkirk recently. Cindy Washington Riggle welcomed all to the 95th reunion and presided over the meeting which included 78 members.
John Thomas and Elizabeth Ward Washington emigrated from Littleport, England, in the 1902-1903 time span with 12 of their 13 children. They built a home on West Sixth Street in Dunkirk, where the family was raised.
Frederick Arthur Washington opened the luncheon with a blessing giving thanks for the gathering and the many memories. A longtime custom in the opening ceremony included the first piece of homemade custard pie being served to Frederick Arthur Washington and Charles Jerome Hannum. Food was brought by family members and served in a buffet style. Ample amounts were available for all to enjoy.
Washington descendants gathered at the Point Gratiot park in Dunkirk for their 95th annual reunion.
Following the luncheon, a business meeting was held with president Riggle conducting the meeting. Five-year-old Ryleigh Jordan stood on a picnic table and read very clearly the poem to all, "Family Matters." A family tree was posted and all those present were asked to put their thumb print on it for posterity. Appreciation was extended to president Riggle for all of her organizational efforts with this reunion. The minutes of the previous meeting were read and the financial report of the group was presented. Elections were held for the new officers, and Riggle was re-elected. Tracy Lynn Marshall will serve as the group's secretary and Nancy Washington Wickmark will serve as the treasurer.
Rebecca Washington Kulger Dlouhy of Ohio was recognized for being the oldest person to attend the reunion, and Ethan Sterwerf was the youngest member to attend. Past president John Sipos served as the photographer for the reunion.
The 2013 reunion will be held on July 13 at 1 p.m. at the Cassadaga American Legion picnic grounds at Bard and Barnum roads in Cassadaga.