SLO Rotary Club plants oak tree grove in honor of late member Barry Karleskint

San Luis Obispo

Members of the Rotary Club of San Luis Obispo de Tolosa recently planted a grove of oak trees as a living tribute to longtime Rotary member, Barry Karleskint, who died earlier this year.

The trees were planted at the Johnson Ranch Trail, located at the intersection of Ontario Road and South Higuera Street in San Luis Obispo. The grove was dedicated by Rotary members and city officials on May 23.

Eighty-eight trees were planted, one for each current member of the Rotary club, including Karleskint. Rotarian and tree planting project manager, Steve Johnson, sayd, “Barry’s tree will be in the center of concentric ovals, with his wife Brenda’s Honorary Membership tree planted just east of Barry as she was his rising sun.”

The Rotary Club worked closely with the city of San Luis Obispo to plan the project. “When the city was first approached by the Rotary Club of San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, we were excited to learn about Rotary International’s 2018 goal for every Rotarian in the world to plant a tree,” said city of San Luis Obispo Natural Resources Manager Bob Hill.

Barry Karleskint had been a member of Rotary de Tolosa for 30 years when he died. He was club president in 1993 and served on the board of directors every year since then.

Karleskint was born in Santa Maria and moved to San Luis Obispo at a young age. He attended Cal Poly and upon graduation served in the National Guard for six years. He then went on to help his parents run their nursery and floral shop, and eventually partnered with his sister and brother-in-law to start their own landscape construction company, Karleskint Crum, Inc.

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