"If you won't accept the money, it's worthless to me." - Glen Freeman, pillar of the Dixboro community
So went a day in the life of Lance Pierce, who was raised in the family home on Plymouth Road (two miles east of Ann Arbor) and remains an active resident in the heart of the hamlet of Dixboro. He is a fireman with the Superior Township Fire Department. Lance's recollections are of events that occurred in the 1960s.
"When I was a teenager, Carol Freeman (Glen's wife) asked me to come over and help with some yard work, because they could not do what they used to. After helping them, Glen wanted to pay me and I tried to decline the money."
The wise mentor Freeman responded, "If I can't pay you for helping, then my money is worthless to me." Pierce graciously accepted the payment.
Pierce continued, "I would go over to the Boy Scout Cabin on the Village Green in Dixboro in the winter when Mr. Freeman was making a community ice rink, and sit in the cabin and talk to him when he was taking a smoke break and warming up. "When he got older and he couldn't layout the rink anymore, I made it my mission as a volunteer to continue building 'Glen's' ice rink on the Village Green.
"My friends- most of us were members of Boy Scout Troop 30- and I spent countless hours in zero weather trying to get the rink in shape so that the tradition could continue.
"Unfortunately when most of my 'community help' became older and moved away, I could no longer do it by myself, and I still regret that the ice rink has not been up and running for a few years."
"But because of Glen and that rink, I went on to enjoy a great experience in playing and now coaching the game of hockey which would not have been possible without the Dixboro Ice Rink. I can honestly say, I would not be the person I am today, without the life of Glen Freeman," Pierce said.
"Fred and Ruby Schmid (they also lived on Plymouth Road in Dixboro) were like grandparents to me. I lived right next door to them my entire childhood. They used to come over for every holiday function that was hosted at our house and so did Mrs. Gibb, a widow who lived next door to the Dixboro store.
"It was difficult to see them grow old, and to watch Ruby struggle with Alzheimer’s the way she did in her last few years. People in the neighborhood felt Ruby was disagreeable all the time, but that was Ruby.
"The latest owner of the Schmid house reportedly has some 'big' plans to refurbish the home into a business and totally change the appearance that Fred had worked so hard to maintain for so many years. It will sure be a sad day at the Pierce residence when that happens."
Lance Pierce is a resident of Dixboro. He fully credits those quiet, modest mentors during his youth in Dixboro as strongly influencing his life. I, too, spent my early years living in Dixboro but when I was entering the fifth grade, we moved into Ann Arbor. I have a fondness for the people of the little berg and the historic Dixboro United Methodist Church adjacent to the Village Green. In 1974, the Ann Arbor Public Schools renamed the Dixboro School, the Glen A. Freeman School. - Dale Leslie