An effort's been launched to recognize a well-known High Riverite with a mural.
Elaine Schow and her husband Richard Gullison are raising money to have a mural of Mel Wilson put up in town.
"Melvin was a guitar teacher and just had so many students that he touched through his mentorship and his lessons, you know Melvin didn't just give guitar lessons, he always had a life lesson or some piece of philosophy or encouragement to pass along to his students," she says. "He owned a music store here in High River for a number of years and made such a difference to the community."
Wilson was originally from Texas and lived in the then Black Diamond and Turner Valley areas but taught lessons in High River, eventually moving to the town.
"He's been a musician most of his life, my husband Richard and him were friends and musical compadres for 50 years, he loved playing music, he loved teaching music, that was Melvin, musician, philosopher, mentor."
"At his celebration of life, they had flowers and they invited anyone who had been one of Mel's students to come and take a flower and it was hard to believe how many people were at his celebration of life who went and took a flower, it just struck me how many people's lives Melvin touched."
Schow points out that Melvin was a great cook and loved to cook, saying she and Richard enjoyed many an Octoberfest meal at his place.
She says the idea for a mural came from Richard.
"He just really felt that Melvin had made such a contribution to this community and should be remembered and so obviously High River's a great place for murals and so that kind of became an idea of a great public way so people could come, see the mural and remember Melvin.
We did some research and spoke with Don Hamm, a local artist, and Don Knew Melvin well and so it seemed like a wonderful fit for Don to do the mural. Don has done a mockup of it so we could see it and it's really reflective of Melvin and his music store and his parrot Ella, that many people who knew Melvin would remember Ella on his shoulder as he walked around town."
The mural will be able to withstand the weather and is planned to go on the east side of Evelyn's cafe.
There's already a mural on the building but the new one would go closer to the north end in the breezeway between Evelyn's and Colossi's.
A GoFundMe page has been set up with over $5,100 raised so far with a goal of $12,500.