The Orlando Sentinel from Orlando, Florida on May 11, 1980 · Page 8
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The Orlando Sentinel from Orlando, Florida · Page 8

Orlando, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, May 11, 1980
Page 8
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Florida Sentinel Star Orlando, Florida Sunday, May 11, 1980 Capitol cravings keep 'em hopping d5 1 X 'U . I- i fc'J' ; 1 Dick Burdette David Kirchoff admires his rainbow field . . . he hopes to have over 300.000 plants blooming by 1984. His world blossoms every workday while others struggle along SANFORD In town, a couple of miles down rain-swept Highway 46, in the shops and stores and office buildings, progress and profit and some vague sense of personal fulfillment announce themselves, as they always do, to the jangle of telephones and the ding of the cash register and the paper-sack rustle of buy and sell. Like any other weekday, in any other American city, this is a work day. For most people, that means doing what someone else wants done, the way they want it done, when they want it done. And if work brings no great sense of disappointment, who can be surprised? How can there be great disappointment when there is no great expecta tion? , " . After all, isn't everybody supposed to grow up and get a job? Isn't that what makes the world go round? Then there are people like David Kirchoff. This cool, pouring-down morning, David Kirchoff sits on his screened back porch and gazes out at the driving rain and talks quietly about his world. Day Lily World is its name and it's located on Old Monroe Road just west of here. Likely, it's a world the likes of which you have never seen, it's row after row, plant after plant, blossom after blossom, of those long-stemmed, beautiful day lilies 100,000 of them in all. And if that figure astounds you, consider this: Of that 100,000, at least 10,000 variations are distinctly different from every other. Consider this too: In order to study, develop and name even 50 uniquely new varieties, David Kirchoff and his associate, Mort Morss, have had to raise, from seed, 100,000 day lilies. There's more. By 1984, David Kirchoff hopes to have 300,000 plants blooming including at least 30,000 distinctly different varieties. , But sitting here on the back porch, watching the cold rain pelt the delicate blossoms, you cannot help but decide that there's a whole lot more to ponder here than sheer, staggering numbers; more than someone doing something different and making a living at it. One's sense of permanency, for example. Or lack of it. For if, in flowers as in life, it's long-lasting fulfillment you crave, . there's little to recommend David Kirchoff s worlds - Within 24 hours, the orchid-like-blossom wilts and dies. This time tomorrow, not a single one of the hundreds of thousands of colorful blossoms David Kirchoff is gazing out at from his .screened back porch will even be alive. - - r : '! And with that unavoidably in mind, you cannot help but wonder: What is it that compels, or allows, a man to love something that he knows will not last not even until tomorrow? But if, in flowers as in life, it's continuity, a kind of perpetual fulfillment you crave, look no further than David Kirchoffs world. Between April and August, during What is one of the longest grown ing seasons for any flower, each of those 100,000 plants could produce up to 800 blossoms each. ' - And to a sensitive soul like David Kirchoff, who freely admits that day lilies are his passion, that's a prospect to brighten even the rainiest of days. . So, while in town, others are spending their working lives selling in- surance and fixing flat tires and waiting on customers and filing lawsuits and punching cash registers and driving taxis and writing newspaper columns, none of which offers much promise of immortality, here are David Kirchoff and his 100,000 day lilies. And in his own way, David Kirchoff sometimes thinks about this business of indirect immortality. "If you're lucky and you develop a day lily and happen to name it after yourself, it might be around generation after generation," David Kirchoff said. "Perhaps, in a small way, it is a shot at a kind of immortality..." And so, come tomorrow, they will be gone, every single one of those hundreds of thousands of beautiful blooms David Kirchoff is gazing at. ' And sure as tomorrow, hundreds of thousands more will take their place. ...;i.v,r -y House pages learn inside story By SHARON CARRASCO SwitiiwKtar ' . TALLAHASSEE Decked out in their Sunday best, the pages sit patiently at the back of the House of Representatives chamber con-. templating who will be the next legislator to press the yellow button. A candy bar may come to a legislator's mind as he digests a series of amendments for an already complicated education bill. Heated debate, may call for another pack of cigarettes or an icy Coke to calm a raspy throat. Discretely, they summon the pages with a touch of a yellow button in a control panel by their chair,' careful not to tap the others for voting (green for yea and red for nay). A page mother monitors the calls and sends pages scurrying be-' tween the six rows of chattering legislators. . Pages never know when they'll be called to the House floor to fetch something, but past experience has taught them just about what to expect from certain legislators. Rep. Richard Crotty, R-Orlando usually orders coffee with cream and a package of low-calorie sugar "but the cream is fattening," quipped Cheryl Woodruff, 14, whose father is Rep. T, M. Woodruff, R-St. Petersburg. Cheryl added that other legislators savor a cup of black coffee with a dash of salt or hot chocolate with sugar. , Thirteen-year-old Chris Poff said he hasn't carried many sodas to his sponsor, Rep. Everett Kelly D-Ta-vares, but he does deliver a lot of messages. "I never go to him for something to drink but he always gets messages about some fishermen talking to him about fish trapping," said Chris, who attends Leesburg Junior High. : Rep. Sidney Martin, D-Haw-thorne, never summons the pages until one of them walks by, Chris said. , , "His button is never on but every time I walk past him he wants something usually orange juice," said the freckled-face boy, adding that Martin has a habit of shaking his hand. Lenny Brantley, whose sponsor is Rep. Bobby Brantley, R-Longwood, said his father rarely asks for anything. But Rep. John Lewis III, D-Jacksonville, "will stop me., "He always wants something from the copy machine," Lenny said. Donna Grant, 13, of Maitland, is the page for Rep. Toni Jennings, R-Orlando. "Usually, I just give her messages," Donna said. "She always has messages." Whatever the task, pages are obliged to get it right the first time. Donna said. "If you get an order wrong, some of the people will get real mad." Each year, a House member may sponsor a page who ranges in age I " 73 t x'ySi - " I .iiniii Will III I t Chris Poff's ready with hot coffee ... he helps Rep. Everett Kelly get through another House session. from 12 to 15 to perform a variety of duties while the House is in session. During the week, they distribute material to legislators, deliver messages within the chamber and . perform other services. Pages for .the Senate perform similar duties. Outside the House chamber, messengers sit on a long padded bench waiting their turn to answer a call from the switchboard. Mainly, they pick up and deliver materials in the Capitol center for members and offices. However, one day last week Jeff Hoblick of De-Land made a special delivery. "I got a call to go to a secretary's office and picked up a package wrapped in brown paper," Jeff said. "She had two lobsters in it to go to (Rep. A.M.) Fontana's office." t fa ' H II. Ambush alibi M can prove . . .1 wasn't there' Raymond Taylor Jr. . . . charged in ambush of 4 men. rmmmim minimum im miww mywrnn i K . , s ' - - - m t t Eugene Bailey . . . former mayor shot 3 times. : By TEX O'NEIL and BILL BOND SaftUfMl Star f , , The burly former assistant district attorney from Tennessee, charged in the bizarre 1977 ambush of four prominent Williston-area men, said he isn't worried about the outcome of any trial. Raymond E. Taylor Jr. said he's got aii iroh-clad alibi. , . , "I can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt I wasn't there". ' ' Taylor, speaking by telephone from his home in Dayton, Tenn., said he has several witnesses who can place him in a Gainesville movie theater on the night of Jan. 8, 1977, when four elderly men were waylaid in a shotgun attack on a desolate stretch of U.S. Highway , 27, four miles east of the Levy County line. Taylor and another man were charged early last week with second-degree murder in the ambush. the former Williston city attorney said the reason , at least two people remember where he was the night in question is because the ambush was all anyone talked about the next day, when Taylor hosted a go-ing-away barbecue for himself. He was moving to Tennessee to rejoin his wife who had left him. Taylor said some of the 30 to 40 guests were kidding one another about being involved in the surprise attack that left one man dead and another critically injured. . "I'll bet you did it," Taylor recollected guests saying . to one another. When the ribbing focused on one man in particular, Taylor said, the man told, them something like "If I did it I must have had a powerful gun or rocket, because I was in the movies in Gainesville. ; You can ask Ray, he was there too." , The defendant also said another person at the party was at the movies that night and might recall Taylor's ' being there. But the attorney pointed put that even if, the individual only recalls being there on Jan. 8, that . would be circumstantial corroboration of Taylor's alibi. . The 34-year-old father of two said someone whom he declined to identify recalls accompanying him to the movies. Taylor also said several relatives from Lakeland, who were waiting for him when he returned home from the movie, wanted to know what the ruckus on U.S. Highway 27 was. Taylor said it was only when he called the police that he learned of the ambush. " The Lakeland native is free on $20,000 bond and faces a June 17 extradition hearing in Dayton. The sheriffs department in Marion County, where the ambush took place, charged Taylor and Paul Allen, of Opelika, Ala., with the murder of Walter Scott, of Archer. Sheriff's officers also say Taylor and Allen face ' charges of aggravated battery for the shooting of Eugene Bailey, prominent realtor and the former mayor of Williston. A source close to the investigation says Bailey may have been the target of the ambush and that Scott was killed by mistake. Taylor once rented a law office from Bailey. Authorities got their first major break in the bizarre case when a woman, former Belleview city clerk Max-ine Peterson, complained to Opelika police on April IS that she had been abused by Allen, 50, with whom she lived. Later, Mrs. Peterson, who ran unsuccessfully in 1968 for the Maine House of Representatives, told aa Opelika cop she had information about the Marion County crime. Opelika authorities alerted police in Florida. Within a week, Mrs. Peterson repeated her story to counselors at a Mobile, Ala., center for battered wom- Ambush, Page 7-5 Ball's a crusty, courtly business whiz who at 92 baby-sits Du Pont empire . By MATT BOKOR ' . AModfttd Prau JACKSONVILLE He's the embodiment of chivalry on one hand and a bullish businessman on the other and he's still going strong at age 92. . , - . A courtly Virginia native, Edward Ball refuses to sit until every worn-. an in a room has been seated. But men who cross him in the business, world rarely remain on their feet. . "Confusion to the enemy," Ball says, making his favorite toast for . the evenings he and close associates sip bourbon. Ball says he first 1 sipped the brew at age 4. "I took a swallow and I thought it was great." ' 1 Ball is a financier extraordinaire . under whose tutelage the estate of. his late brother-in-law, Alfred I. du Pont, has blossomed from an estimated $30 million in 1935 to some $2 billion today. , He's a millionaire in his own right, sitting atop a financial empire that includes the Florida East Coast Railway, one of the nation's richest rails; the St. Joe Paper Co., a sugar company, banks and numerous other holdings. Yet, Ball still considers himself a farmer, and he's especially proud that two Canadian geese roost in a tree at his Leon County ranch out-side Tallahassee. "They're the first geese I ever heard of making a nest in a tree," he says. , , , - j , r 4- T i A V i Financier extraordinaire Ed Ball, a millionaire in his own right, took charge of the du Pont estate 45 years ago and has nurtured it to where it now is worth an estimated $2 billion. Auoctatvd Preu He'll spin tales about his hunting, fishing, traveling and drinking exploits, but his talk about business to outsiders is brief.- X He attributes his success to luck and hard work, and says anyone can succeed with those S5vo tools. "I've been lucky. If you have good luck, it sure helps a lot," he says, leaning back in his big black chair as his dark eyes glint from under bushy gray brows. Ball, a balding man with failing eyesight, sometime cups a hand ' i over an ear to improve his hearing, but he moves with agility around " his office to proudly point out hunting pictures, a shot of the one-room schoolhouse he attended in North- ''Ni 8all,Page2'B

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