Harrodsburg’s Larry Wilham picked a special day to retire. The same day he laid down his tools as maintenance supervisor at Sunrise Children’s Service’s Woodlawn Center in Danville, he took the hand of his wife of 47 years to celebrate their anniversary so they could stroll together into their golden years.
Wilham began work at the Woodlawn Center 22 years ago and has served as head of maintenance since 1992. The 22-acre campus is home to nine buildings, including the historic Birney home that was constructed in the late 1790s and is listed on the Kentucky Historical Register. Wilham said caring for the old home put special meaning on his career.
“That’s the first thing people see when they drive on the campus, and it’s quite the first impression,” he said. “It has so much history.”
The white house was the birthplace and home to James Birney, a leading abolitionist in the decades before the Civil War. Birney published anti-slavery newspapers and even ran for president on an anti-slavery platform, and there’s some talk that the home served as a refuge for runaway slaves as part of the famed Underground Railroad.