Ogletree estate donates $50,000 to Demopolis organizations

Thanks to a long-time resident of Demopolis and her caring son, five Demopolis organizations each received $10,000 this week.

Imadelle Ogletree, who lived in the city for 40 years, died in 2003 at the age of 93. Her son, Beauregard “Buddy” Galon, sent a handwritten note to the law firm of Lloyd and Dinning LLC stipulating the money be distributed in her honor.

“She truly loved Demopolis,” Galon wrote.

He died July 4, a few days after he sent the letter and checks. Galon was 74.

“Their generosity couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Kirk Brooker, curator for the Marengo County Historical Society. One of the MCHS properties, Bluff Hall, received a check, which will be used for repairs.

Another of the donations went to the Marengo County History and Archives Museum. “We are just thrilled and delighted,” said director Mary Fitts. Some of the funds will be used to repair the air conditioning at the museum, and the rest will go toward the renovation of the building.

“The $10,000 donated to the Demopolis Music Study Club scholarship fund is greatly appreciated,” said Frank McNamara, treasurer of the Demopolis Music Study Club. “Since scholarship funds are given to worthy music students with the understanding that the money will be paid back, the same dollar will help young music lovers over a long period of time.”

“We are excited about this generous donation,” said Morgan Grimes Allen, director of the Demopolis Public Library. “The library board will be meeting to consider how best to use the money.”

The library also received a donated collection of Galon’s four books on English aristocracy, Hollywood and the Kennedys, including books on his late wife, Lady May Lawford.

The fifth organization to receive a check is Gaineswood, a property of the Alabama Historical Commission.

Ogletree is remembered for her sense of humor and style. She was known for her collection of hats, many of which were given to her by her son. To celebrate one of her birthdays, she gave away her hats to her many friends.

Galon, a native of Atlanta, was a Hollywood stage, television and motion picture personality who began his entertainment career as a Walt Disney child performer. He retired many years later as a director for Lucille Ball films.

For his musical talents he was named to “Who’s Who in American Music.” Both Youth in Film Association and the Florida Motion Picture and Television Association honored him with Lifetime Achievement awards. The UCLA School of Education named him “Educator of the Year.” Galon was preceded in death by his wife and his stepson, actor Peter Lawford.