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AHS Region 2/Great Lakes Newsletter
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Some recollections
from Nick Balash,
Bill Sevetson, and Leo Sharp.
Gathered and written by Gisela Meckstroth
he 
Howard Hite Achievement Award for
T
Hybridizing Excellence
 was awarded
posthumously to Walter Jablonski during the
2002 AHS Region 2 Summer Meeting awards
ceremonies.
Is there a daylily lover among us today who
 A NATIONAL TREASURE GROUP: imagine the world
does not know STELLA DE ORO? You and I
without the beautiful daylily introductions of...Mavis Smith,
know that there is not. As a matter of fact, this
Walter Jablonski, Pauline Henry and Van Sellers 
cultivar is so well known because landscapers
of public and private gardens have used it
Note: This photo and its legend appeared in the Spring 1985 AHS Region 2
Newsletter (the first all color AHS regional newsletter) and was reprinted here
perhaps more often than they have any other
with permission of the 1985 Region 2 RVP Phil Brockington and RPD Editor Leo
daylily; at least, that is the case in Ohio.
Sharp. This color photo has been scanned from that newsletter issue for this
Interestingly, as Walter's old friend Leo Sharp
screen version.
recalls, Walter did not really care for the small
flower, but he certainly recognized its many
outstanding qualities.
The History of the Award
:
Leo's friendship with Walter began before
At the 1989 Region 2 Summer Meeting, this new award was announced
1976 when he lived near Merrillville, Indiana,
and sponsored by the Southern Michigan Iris and Hemerocallis Society.  It
where Walter grew his daylilies.  Walter and
is a free form, sand etched glass plate with an engraved image of Howard
Leo would walk the seedling beds every
Hite's INDONESIA on it.
morning. As Leo told the 1999 Region 2
It is meant to honor years of effort on the part of a hybridizer to improve
Symposium attendees in Indianapolis, Indiana,
daylily cultivars. Any Region 2 member, including members of the Hite
and as that presentation was reported by Karen
Award Committee, may submit names of candidates for the award to the
Burgoyne (Texas) in our Region 2 Spring 
Region 2 RVP before January 31 each year. 
(Note the exception in 2003 is
Summer 1999 newsletter, Walter exhibited a
May 31. Please refer to voting ballot on page 37)
natural showmanship as a young man, and he
The criteria for selection of a recipient were printed in the Fall 1999/Winter
was always considered to be bright. One day, a
2000 issue of our Region 2 newsletter. You may also contact the Southern
neighbor of the Jablonski family wanted to
Michigan Iris and Hemerocallis Society for information.
express this compliment about Walter's intelli 
gence to his father, and he received the quite
unexpected come back response of:  Too bad
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he doesn't have any brains.  Walter was
orphaned at age 16 when he was a high school
sophomore, and it fell to him to raise his five
1990 Dr. Charles Branch
1996 Robert Griesbach
siblings. He managed to rebuild the family
1991 No award presented
1997 Dennis Anderson
fortune in the grocery business and help all of
1992 Bryant Millikan
1998 Curt Hanson
the siblings to educate themselves and to
1993 Brother Charles Reckamp
1999 Marge Soules
become successful, contributing citizens.
1994 Steve Moldovan
2000 John Benz
According to Leo, Walter also served as
1995 Howard Hite
2001 Leo Sharp
president of the Chicagoland Daylily Society in
2002 Walter Jablonski
Continued on page 49
 Spring/Summer 2003  Page
4
447
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