The Shawnee Mission Rotary Club Wednesday revealed a secret that it has kept for months. The club is donating a clock tower to be installed at a prominent spot on the rebuilt Johnson Drive. That part wasn’t a secret. That the clock will be dedicated to long-time Rotarian John Hollyman was the secret club members had been keeping. Now he knows.
The 99-year-old Hollyman, a retired Mission dentist, was honored at this week’s meeting along with the families of two other long-time club members, now deceased, who also will be remembered with plaques at the clock tower: O.M. Ashe and Reuben E. Sell.
“I’m proud to be a Rotarian,” said Hollyman, who will turn 100 in April. Hollyman was the second mayor of the Countryside, the municipality that later merged with Mission. Hollyman said he could not join the Shawnee Mission Rotary Club when it was founded because the club rule at the time was only one member of each profession and another dentist was already a member. He was able to join two years later.
Hollyman had his first dental practice on the Plaza and taught part-time at a dental school. He later put up a building at 5830 Nall. After 41 years of practice, he retired in 1981. Hollyman was president of the local club and served a term as governor of the Rotary district.
O.M. Ashe operated a clothing store in Mission for 40 years and had a Rotary fund established in his name. Some of that money was used to purchase the clock tower. Reuben Sell was an electrical engineer who had a company in Mission for many years.
The clock is currently in storage and will be installed later this year at the corner of Johnson Drive and Woodson on what will be known as Rotary Plaza.