When they considered a way to remember him, it just made sense to include two of his favorite things: the church and flowers.
Frequent customers to Plaza Flowers, with locations both in King of Prussia and Audubon along Egypt Road, likely remember Kenneth Osgroski. Better known as “Kenny” to his friends and customers, he started to work with the Plaza Flowers family after meeting the business’s founder, Dorothy Drummond.
“He used to work at the mall as the voice of Wanamaker’s,” said Chris Drummond, president of Plaza Flowers. “He did the public announcements and had a wonderful voice.”
After Dorothy met Kenny during a stop into the store, she couldn’t resist offering him a job at the flower shop.
“He was such a jovial, wonderful person,” said Drummond. “My mother just fell in loved and offered him a job.”
That was 1985, and the rest, as they say, is history. Kenny continued to work for the local flower shop until he was forced to battle cancer.
“He was so involved with the local theater, Sacred Heart Church, he was just such a giving person,” said Drummond. Diagnosed with kidney cancer, Kenny still spent his illness worrying about others.
“He struggled with cancer a few years back,” said Drummond. “It was rough to see, but great to see how he put others before himself. Even when he was really sick, he was so concerned about everyone else.”
Kenny lost his battle with kidney cancer Aug. 4, 2013 at the age of 54. Since then, his friends and coworkers have sorely missed him. One such friend stopped in to Plaza Flowers, where he’d met Kenny, to ask what he could do to help remember Kenny and his amazing spirit.
“State Sen. John Rafferty met him here at the flower shop back in the ‘80s,” said Drummond. “He was a good friend of Kenny’s and was torn apart when he passed. He wanted to do something as a memorial to him.”
Drummond said that with Kenny’s love of flowers and the love of his church, it made sense to couple the two in a memorial for him.
“He volunteered at so many events,” said Drummond who said one of Kenny’s favorites was the annual Polish Festival. “He just jumped right in wherever he was needed, sang in the choir, sat on committees. He was real involved.”
Sen. Rafferty recommended the idea to contact Sacred Heart to see where a memorial could fit.
“We met with the father of the church and found a place out front by the sign,” said Drummond. The donated sign lacked some flair. “We met last fall, but it was too late to plant at that time, so we planned it for spring.”
Drummond, along with Plaza Flowers volunteers and Sen. John Rafferty’s office, will head to the Bridgeport-based church Saturday, April 5 to plant flowers in his memory.
“We will landscape a part of the church, and place a memorial plaque for Kenny,” said Drummond. “It will be open to the public. He just touched so many lives.”
From 1 to 4:30 p.m., all are welcome to attend the memorial planting, which will end in a simple dedication prayer.
Drummond said that he wished his mother, Dorothy, who started Plaza Flowers, could also be there to see the work. She sadly died of cancer herself back in 2005.
“They were best buddies,” said Drummond. “I am lucky to have worked with both of them.”
Starting back in high school when his mother opened the shop, Drummond, whose family is based in Audubon, said that he was happy to work through the years at the flower shop, especially with Kenny.
“He was like a brother to me,” said Drummond. “When Rafferty came to me to ask what to do, I thought plants would be exactly what he’d want.”
The Plaza Flower and Sen. John Rafferty volunteers will be at the Sacred Heart Church, 120 Jefferson St., in Bridgeport on Saturday, April 5 from 1 to 4:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend. Guests are asked to bring along gardening gloves, rakes and shovels to assist in the planting.
For more information, call Plaza Flowers or visit the shop’s Facebook page here. Plaza Flowers is located at 417 Egypt Road.