If you were a kid living in Phoenix, Arizona between 1954 and 1989, you probably watched a local children's show called "Wallace and Ladmo". "Wallace" was Bill Thompson, and "Ladmo" was Ladimir Kwiatkowski. They worked together, and they were friends.
|Wallace (Bill Thompson) on the top, Ladmo (Ladimir Kwiatkowski) in the top hat, and Pat McMahon (in the character of Gerald)|
After Ladmo died, in 1994, his friend Wallace planted a tree at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum, which is in Superior, east of Phoenix. It's the Ladmo Tree, and you can go see it. It's a pistachio tree, and it's not very big, so you will probably need to have someone there show you where it is. And if you're wondering if there's a connection between Bill Thompson (Wallace) and Boyce Thompson, there is. William Boyce Thompson was Bill's great-uncle.
|William Boyce Thompson, founder of the Boyce Thompson Arboretum, and great-uncle of Bill Thompson ("Wallace")|
|Ladimir Kwiatkowski ("Ladmo") on the Arizona State baseball team in the 1950s|
By the way, "Ladmo" (Ladimir Kwiatkowski) was on the baseball team of Arizona State in the 1950s. He and his friend Bill Thompson spent their lives making children happy. I didn't grow up in Phoenix, so I have no memories of them, but based on the affection that the kids that they entertained have for them to this day, they must have been pretty great.
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So if you remember Ladmo, and would like to see the tree that his friend Bill planted to remember him by, go visit the Boyce Thompson Arboretum. Speaking for myself, I can't think of a nicer way to be remembered.
The Boyce Thompson Arboretum is located at Highway 60 Milepost #223 near the historic copper mining town of Superior, about one hour's drive due east of Phoenix on the Superstition Freeway.
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