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August 5, 2013

Faces of Fauquier: He loves working outdoors at park

Photo/Cassandra Brown
Gary Norman graduated from Flint Hill Prep School and the Columbia School of Broadcasting
I previously lived in Fairfax and sold my house. I wanted to move further out into the country and get away from the congestion and traffic.
— Gary Norman
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
Gary Norman describes himself as a simple guy with a simple job.

For almost five years, he has worked as a grounds man for the Fauquier County Parks and Recreation Department at Vint Hill. “I love the outdoors,” he says.

Working 37.5 hours a week, his mostly outdoor work includes everything from repairing fences to helping maintain seven sports fields.

• Age


• Home


• Work

Full-time grounds man with Fauquier County Parks and Recreation Department for the Eastern Region at Vint Hill.
I work as a team with Denny Mong, 71, also a grounds man. Last summer, we helped build a new playground in three months.

Our projects include moving bleachers, setting up for events, picnics and marathons, checking trash, maintaining the Fauquier Community Theatre, fertilizing, seeding and more.

• Why you do the job?

I’m claustrophobic and don’t like offices. With this job I can be outside in the open air. The hot and cold weather doesn’t bother me. I get to ride around on a tractor. It is difficult and exhausting at times, but it’s never boring.

• Family

Two dogs: Studley, a German shepherd/Labrador mix, and Kirby, a German shepherd.

• Education

I graduated from Flint Hill Prep School in 1975, and attended George Mason and Northern Virginia Community College. After that I graduated from Columbia School of Broadcasting in 1980.

• Civic and/or Church involvement

None recently

• How long have you lived in Fauquier?

10-1/2 years

• Why do you live here?

I previously lived in Fairfax and sold my house. I wanted to move further out into the country and get away from the congestion and traffic.

• How do you describe this county?

Rural. Everyone tries to preserve it, but developers are trying to creep in. They (the community members) try to maintain the old-fashioned ways.

• What would you change about Fauquier?

I wish they had more golf courses. I don’t want it to develop too much. Keep it rural. Maybe put in a drive-in theatre.

• What do you do for fun?

Play golf and tennis. I love astronomy. Walk my dogs and they walk me. I’m an amateur writer, mostly short stories about science fiction, political and quirky, creative stuff. I get lots of my writing ideas from music.

• What’s your favorite place in Fauquier?

The view of Manassas Gap, close to where I live.

• What will Fauquier be like in 10 years?

Hopefully won’t change too much. Maybe more golf courses. Small development. Don’t want to see any skyscrapers. Doubt anything big will happen soon. Maybe put in an oil line or power plant.

• Favorite TV show?

“Ghost Adventures” and “Under the Dome”

• Favorite Movie?
“Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”

• Favorite book?

“The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe,” Stephen King novels and Civil War books.

• Favorite vacation spot?


• Favorite flavor of ice cream?

Chocolate chip mint

• Who’s your hero and why?

Robert E. Lee; he did amazing things with his rag-tag army. Great leader. George Washington: inspirational, natural born leader. Robert Griffin III, “RG3,” quarterback for the Washington Redskins. I look up to him as a hero and role model because he plays so hard.

• What would you do if you won $1 million in the lottery?

First thing I would do is disconnect the phone and go away for three weeks and try to organize my thoughts and figure out what just happened. I would give a third of it to family, a third of it to the bank to save and keep a third of it for myself. I would definitely give lots away. I wouldn’t spend it right away. I have to save some!

>> Suggest a “Faces of Fauquier” profile subject

Do you know someone who lives in Fauquier County you would like to see in Faces of Fauquier? E-mail Cassandra Brown at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Editor Lou Emerson at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Previous Faces of Fauquier:

• She sees “everyone” at Carousel

• Library assistant works in a “fun place"

• Hat lady sets up shop in Old Town Warrenton
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