Jonathan Jackson’s cover story in this month’s Sandersville Scene is a tribute to Tonia Marynell, a passionate voice for the arts and for animal rights.
I met Tonia Marynell via email a few years ago. She & I finally saw each other face to face in Augusta about a year & a half ago when she made a presentation about her equine art. And, since then, I’ve followed her on Facebook, and often via email. I have learned from Tonia that anything is possible if you want it enough.
Tonia lives deep in kaolin country. She’s leading a grassroots movement to persuade the Sandersville City Council and the Washington County Commission to transform the old school building into a cultural arts center. And she’s bringing resources together so that these leaders can see what other rural communities have done; and, the benefits they enjoy. Her next challenge is to persuade local businesses and other artists that they need to organize as partners to governmental agencies and explore the possibilities… art classes, theater performances, a satellite campus for a college, culinary expos, and special events…
Some of Tonia’s role models may well be the subject of a 2004 book – Buck’s Heroes – she illustrated. Buck’s Heroes tells the story of the dogs used by US military forces during the Vietnam war. They gave all they could so that their handlers and those for whom they served had the opportunity for better lives.