When you talk about quality of life in a community, you need to start with its people. So when you talk about Peru’s excellent quality of life, it wouldn’t hurt to start with Danny Dean Rush.
Rush has been into everything — youth sports programs, Ole Olsen, Junior Achievement, the circus, historic preservation, public housing, business, Rotary projects.
So what drives Rush — who turned 70 on May 19 — to be an involvement sponge?
“I firmly believe that we are to serve others in proportion to our ability to do so, with which our God has blessed us,” he said in an email interview.
“I also subscribe to Oprah's ‘pay it forward’ concept,” he continued. “Do not expect anything in return for helping/serving others. As a recipient, do for someone else, in-kind and as you are able, for the help/service/blessing that you have received.”
An only child, Rush has essentially spent his entire life in north central Indiana, born in Logansport, raised in Walton.
His father, Clifford Ellis Rush, fought in the Battle of the Bulge and came home to farm before becoming a construction operating engineer, muscling cranes, bulldozers and earth-moving equipment. His mother, Virginia Lee (Wolford), was a “Rosie the Riveter” in the steel mills in Gary before becoming a stay-at-home mom until Dan was around 8. She rejoined the workforce as a production worker at Delco Radio-Electronics in Kokomo for 35 years.
Their work history provides a backdrop for Dan’s.
He’s now entrenched as a licensed real estate broker associate at Carriger Oldfather Realty Inc. Before dealing with property, Rush handled a variety of tasks at Square D for 35 years.
During that time, Rush compiled a scorecard of community involvement that’s as extensive as anything I’ve seen.