Longtime recycle volunteer to be honored for recycling

Vincent Marshall
Dodge City Daily Globe
The CREW Recycle Center will be named after longtime recycling volunteer and former city employee Jane Longmeyer, named in honor of her devotion to recycling in Dodge City.

When citizens think of recycling in Dodge City, one name sticks out.

In the early mornings along 14th Avenue and other city locations, Jane Longmeyer can be seen picking up trash and recyclables.

It is a passion project of hers since joining the United Methodist Church recycle program group in 1990.

Now, Longmeyer will be honored for her efforts as the new Community Recycling Environmental Waste Recycle facility, located at 124 N. 14th Ave., will be named in her honor which was announced Monday evening.

Longmeyer, who retired from the city in 2017, began the Keep Dodge City Beautiful program in 1992.

The naming of the facility came from the CREW Recycling Advisory Board and according to public works director Corey Keller, the program began at the Village Square Mall at a trailer that was given to them by the Dodge City Community College.

"From there they would take it to JC Penney's and they would bale out of their baler until (Longmeyer) advocated for a building which ended up at Military Avenue," Keller said. "So we worked out of that building until the new building was purchased. Jane was able to acquire some of the equipment that is still in use today through (Kansas Department of Health and Environment) grants, and one of the bailers that's there was donated by Walmart originally."

According to city officials, CREW has won many awards due to Longmeyer’s dedication to Keep Dodge City Beautiful through the Keep America Beautiful program.

"Jane's passion for the environment on any given day you can find her out picking up litter throughout the community, even tonight she was out picking up litter so she still finds time during retirement to work with the recycle center," Keller said. "(She) helps us out sorting recyclables."

Longmeyer has led many cleanup projects through out the city and Ford County even when simply walking the streets.

"I was walking with Jane and she pulled a trash bag from her pocket and started picking up trash," Dodge City Mayor Rick Sowers said. "She spots trash from the corner of her eye and she had a whole sack full of trash and I was the dummy walking beside her not noticing the trash so, Jane works tirelessly. There has been no time I have driven down here and seen her picking up some article of trash in the street. It would be an honor to name the building after her for that."

The dedication and naming ceremony will take place on Saturday, April 24 at 10 a.m. at the recycling center during the Great American Clean Up event.

When being informed of the recycle center being named after her, Longmeyer said, "I am honored to have the new recycle center named after me. I was privileged to have worked with a group from the First United Methodist Church in starting the recycling program in September 1990 and grateful for the continued opportunity to work with the program all of these years.

"The support of the community for recycling has been a testimony to its success and now to a first class recycling center. The City of Dodge City did a wonderful job in designing this center and we look forward to the opportunity to now give better customer service."

To contact the writer email vmarshall@gannett.com