LEAVE WHATEVER YOU DO BETTER THAN YOU FOUND IT.
John Keggan is a Marion supporter and collaborative, get-it-done kind of man. Known for years as the (now former) owner of Marion Flower Shop and a local realtor, John has put his all into making Marion wonderful.
In 1968, he was among a select group who helped establish a campus for The Ohio State University in Marion. He was part of the very successful fund raising effort that brought in $675,000 when $400,000 was needed to purchase the 180 acres now home to both Ohio State Marion and Marion Technical College. A buckeye tree with his name on it now thrives on the campus’ Founders Grove and he received the University’s Ralph Howard Service Award and Alumni Citizenship Award for his contributions to his alma mater. John has been present for each new addition to campus since then, including the Science and Engineering Building which opened this academic year.
Valuing art as well as education, John joined the effort to save the Marion Palace Theatre when it was falling into disrepair in the 1970s. He is one of seven men known as the Palace Guard who stepped up to the plate to purchase and restore this local treasure. The Palace Guard were local businessmen who put their money, connections, and sweat equity into helping the Palace revive its landmark status. The Guard created the Palace Cultural Arts Association to maintain and manage the theatre. John’s love for the Palace has never faltered. He still serves as Director Emeritus, was co-chair of the campaign to add the May Pavilion, and has been a volunteer greeter and ticket taker for 40+ years.
According to friend Ted Babich, “John has done more than anyone of his or my generation for the people of Marion. His efforts to save the Palace and establish OSUM will continue to enrich and improve Marion for generations to come.”
John has lent his influence throughout the community—including Rotary, Marion Country Club, Y-Mens, Marion’s Ohio State Alumni Club, United Way, the YMCA, and Epworth United Methodist Church, among others. He and his family are well known for operating Marion Flower Shop (1957-2010),which he started by purchasing the business from Aaron Goerlich and acquiring his former employer, Blake’s Florist. John has truly lived his philosophy to “leave whatever you do better than you found it” and Marion is so appreciative.