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Flat Rock retiree bequeaths $231,000 to park

FLAT ROCK — The estate of a Flat Rock retiree who wanted to "share the happiness (he and his wife) had found in the Flat Rock community" has donated $230,886 to the Park at Flat Rock.

The gift was made from the estate of Richard J. Eppler Jr., the Flat Rock Park and Recreation Foundation announced Monday.

"This gift from local resident Richard Eppler is particularly important to the Park’s development," foundation director Maurean Adams said in a news release. "It can be rare in the work of a relatively new foundation, such as ours, to receive a gift of this size. It will make an impact in the development of the Park at Flat Rock, so much so, that we hope other financial advisors in our community will be working with their clients to consider gifts that inspire others to give."

Eppler’s financial adviser, Ryan Harman of the Edward Jones investment firm, said his client's desire was to see the park continue to improve and benefit Henderson County and Flat Rock and also hoped the gift would inspire businesses and individuals to give.
“Mr. Eppler, a long-time friend and client, became motivated to research the impact of several local nonprofit organizations, after the death of his wife Agnes in 2013," Harmon said. "Remembering fondly her enjoyment of the former Highland Lake Golf Course and its natural surroundings, Dick became interested in the development of the Park at Flat Rock. He wanted a way to share the happiness that he and Agnes had found in the Flat Rock community.

"Mr. Eppler was also a very astute businessman and understood that money 'needed to be put to work' and wanted his gift to inspire and challenge others in the community and to use his gift as a catalyst to raise the level of support for the Park an additional $1 million.”
Since it was founded in 2013 by the Flat Rock Village Council, the Flat Rock Park and Recreation Foundation has raised $800,000 in gifts and grants to support park projects.