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0919, 17 Oct 15

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Korean War veteran Paul Hetebuerg on Oct. 24 Honor Flight

On Wednesday afternoon former West Bend Police Captain Paul Hetebrueg paged though a scrapbook of black-and-white photos from his days in the military during the Korean War.

Hetebrueg talked about his days in the Army when he and six of his buddies volunteered for the draft in 1955. “We were 19 years old and they were drafting guys that were 27,” said Hetebrueg. “We wanted to get on with our lives and get that military stuff behind us.”

A 1952 graduate of West Bend High School, Hetebrueg was working at Formetal making vending machines, when he enlisted in the Army.

Basic training was at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri and then on to Fort Sill, Oklahoma. “After that people were going to Germany and others to Korea and I was fortunate enough to go to Germany,” Hetebrueg said.  Assigned to the 34th Infantry Scout Dog Platoon, Hetebrueg was part of the Canine Corp.

“I just jumped at the chance to work with the dogs,” he said. “We each had a German Shepherd; mine was named Axel and we trained these dogs and we’d go out with patrols and do some scouting.”

Hetebrueg also put on shows for civilians. “The dog could scale a 10-foot wall and he’d sit up there on a 2 x 4 and I’d give him the command to sit and sing,” he said. “He’d get so excited and I just couldn’t shut him up.”

As Hetebrueg flipped through the pages of the scrapbook he pointed to “Axel in attack mode” and “this is Axel jumping 13 feet,” he said with pride.

Stationed in Lenggries, German Hetebrueg said his quarters were top notch as their base was where Hitler trained his ski troops. “There were only four buildings on the whole base,” he said.

In Germany for a little over a year, Hetebrueg returned to West Bend after service. “I worked for seven months for Fred Mettler Heating and Air Conditioning and then I took the exam for the police department,” said Hetebrueg.

Starting in 1957 as a patrol officer, Hetebrueg spent 32 years with the West Bend Police Department. He climbed the ranks and was one of two second-in-command captains. Hetebrueg was in charge of the department’s operations division; he was widely known and well liked in the community. Hetebrueg retired in December 1989.

Hetebrueg has been to D.C., he went as part of training during his time with the West Bend PD. Hetebrueg’s daughter Jody Bender, a teacher at Holy Angels School, will be his guardian on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight Oct. 24.

Steve Volkert new city administrator in Hartford

The mayor of Hartford announcing tonight Steve Volkert is the new city administrator. Volkert, who will take over January 1, 2016 for retiring administrator Gary Koppelberger, has signed a four-year contract for $115,000.

Volkert, 48, has been the assistant city administrator and human resources director in West Bend since February 2013; he replaced Warren Kraft. “This was a very difficult decision,” said Volkert. “I did not seek this opportunity, it sought me.”

Volkert said it was flattering to be asked into the mix. “I shook off the request a couple of times,” he said. “But in the 11th hour their representative came back to me and said we could get this done.”

After the first interview Volkert was called in for two more meetings. “I was honored and humbled to be called in,” he said. “I really enjoyed the process because I had everything to gain and nothing to lose.”

Volker has been in West Bend for more than two years and said he really loved his job.  “I love the relationship I have with West Bend and the people I work with are absolutely phenomenal and they’re very, very good at what they do,” he said.

Volkert met with department heads in Hartford and felt an overwhelming feeling of professionalism and welcoming. “They’re a really down-to-earth group,” he said.  West Bend Mayor Kraig Sadownikow said the city will now post its open position, set up an interview committee to narrow the list of candidates and have the full council interview the finalists.

Volkert’s last day will be Dec. 31, 2015. He said he is eager to move into Hartford and has two years to do so according to his contract. “They want someone to be the face of the community and really be involved and that’s one of the things I enjoyed at my other jobs in Winneconne and Omro,” he said. “I’m looking forward to building relationships and I feel that’s what the administrator’s job is all about.

Volkert was making $96,600 in his current position in West Bend. “I definitely did not make the move because of the money, this is just about the opportunity to do the things I’m very strong in,” he said.

Volkert was one of two candidates vying for the city administrator’s job in Hartford. A local product, Volkert graduated West Bend East High School in 1985.

Longtime Newburg fire fighter dies

Jeff Lochen, a life-long member of the Newburg Fire Department, Secretary of the Badger Firefighters Association and the Washington County Fire Investigators passed away Friday morning at the age of 44. “Jeff dedicated his life to helping others and will be very much missed by all,” said Ron Naab, volunteer with the Allenton Fire Department.

Police investigate city-wide vandalism

The first call came in Saturday at 9:12 a.m. A person complained their car had been vandalized with mustard and eggs thrown on the exterior. Aside from the cleanup the food and condiments can damage the paint on a vehicle.

Though out the weekend more complaints came in including from people living on Eighth Avenue, Tenth Avenue, Silverbrook Drive north of Paradise Drive, Walnut Street, Poplar Street, Villa Park and Shepherds Drive off Highway 33.

West Bend police confirmed they received 15 complaints, both for mustard-and-egg damage. Police said this is an open investigation and if people have damage they should definitely call police to file a complaint. Lt. Mike Hartwell said police have no leads at this time.

Digital kiosks at McDonald’s in Jackson

The McDonald’s in Jackson has a self-serve electronic kiosk in the house. The Golden Arches on Highway 60 is one of a select few nationwide to test the digital kiosk. A simple touchscreen provides easy-to-read instructions to place an order make a payment and then wait for staff to deliver.

The touchscreen is relatively easy to figure everything out as it’s very similar to the self checkouts at the grocery store. The clerks said the most confusing part of the process has been the option to add or remove certain items from a burger in the “Create Your Taste” selection.

An article in Business Insider said “McDonald’s is not planning to pare down its work force as it adds the new kiosks to restaurants.” The article said, “The kiosks could, however, allow operators to move some workers away from cash registers and into the kitchen to help speed up customer service. That could provide a major boost to franchisees who say they are understaffed and unable to handle busy meal traffic.”

There is no cost to use the kiosk and the turnaround time for my order was just as fast as going to the counter and ordering.

Honoring WBHS alum in the military

West Bend East High School social studies teacher Scott Mindel is trying to make sure Veterans Day is celebrated more appropriately at the high schools. “In the 20-plus years I have taught here we have not properly honored the service of our veterans from our school,” he said. “I would like to display in a prominent place in the high school the names of the faculty/staff and those that attended WBHS that have served or are currently serving in the military.”

Mindel, in cooperation with Judy Steffes and the Washington County Insider, are collecting names and photos branch of service and their years of service. “The idea is to create a portable display that would be used in other buildings in the school district and at community functions. People can submit the information to Judy Steffes at or

Paying tribute to veterans

Common Sense Citizens is organizing the veterans-recognition program set for the Nov. 2 West Bend Common Council meeting. The ceremony at the West Bend High School Silver Lining Arts Center begins at 6:30 p.m. The group will lead the gathering in several songs before the Mayor proceeds with the Pledge of Allegiance. Speeches will follow.

The Council will recognize all military veterans in the community with special thanks to those that served in Desert Shield and Desert Storm and to all veterans that served in the 1990s.

Mayor Sadownikow will issue several proclamations giving thanks to those who risked their lives to serve their country and help maintain our freedoms. If you need a ride please contact Mayor Kraig Sadownikow’s office at 262-335-5123. Transportation to and from the meeting will be free for all veterans.

The Washington County Historical Society also is welcoming the public to join veterans on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at the Washington County Veterans Plaza at Fifth Avenue and Poplar Street for a tribute beginning at 10:45 a.m. The ceremony includes the West Bend Veterans Color Guard and Firing Squad and the playing of Taps. After the tribute the Old Courthouse Museum will be open until 4:30 p.m. Admission will be free to all visitors.

Successful fundraiser for Dove family

It was an evening of competition, compassion and community service as the West Bend East volleyball team hosted a fundraiser for the MACC Fund and the Dove family. Sisters Lily and Bailey Dove are battling leukemia. This past Tuesday evening the Suns rolled out the red carpet for the family, selling raffle tickets for gift baskets and raising more than $3,000.

The Suns also went the extra mile to make the family feel special. Bailey was unable to make the game but Lily and her sister Maddie, their father and grandmother were in attendance. Lily and Maddie joined the team on the court prior to the start of the Suns game vs. Oconomowoc. West Bend East junior Kylie Cartwright stepped forward and read a brief story about her battle with cancer.

“Over the course of five months I received five rounds of chemotherapy and 21 days of radiation,” said Cartwright. “The MACC Fund is a dedicated program to funding childhood cancer and related blood disorder research.”  During player introductions the Suns student section, dressed in superhero costumes, held up a pink sign touting ‘Lily and Bailey you are our superheroes.’

In front of their hometown fans coach Colleen Hasse’s Suns brought their ‘A’ game and handed undefeated Oconomowoc its first loss of the season. The West Bend East volleyball team pulled off an inspiring victory handing Oconomowoc its first Wisconsin Little Ten conference loss of the season; 26-24, 25-22, 19-25, and 25-22.

The Moving Wall™

Big plans ahead for The Moving Wall coming to Germantown in 2016: Plans are starting to take shape as The Moving Wall will be coming to Germantown Sept. 1 – 5, 2016. The American Legion Post 1 is organizing the effort. Some of the events include a ‘Welcome Home’ parade for veterans, a Healing Field with hundreds of flags to pay tribute to veterans and military personnel, and a non-denominational service on Sunday with a candlelight vigil at dusk.

The Legion is also planning to transform its banquet hall into an educational hands-on experience with memorabilia, soldiers’ dog tags, and activities with drill sergeants. Plans are also in the works to bring in a Huey helicopter and hopefully have a flyover during open ceremonies.

The Moving Wall™ is a traveling half-size replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. It will be on display next year across from the Legion Post at Kennedy Middle School. The American Legion and The Moving Wall are working in cooperation with Judy Steffes and the Washington County Insider as a partner in media for the event.

Award winners at Elevate 10th annual banquet

More than 100 people were in attendance Thursday evening at the annual Elevate awards banquet. Local leaders recognized for their efforts to help fight alcohol and other drug abuse in Washington County included Ron Naab, Gordie Boucher, Jamie Shutes, Kettlebrook Church, Toni Olson, Jessi Koski, Kristine Dreher, Jennifer Mesko, Serenity Krueger, and Halle Collins-George. “We are making a difference,” said volunteer Ron Naab. “My dream was the Life is Tough trailer and we were fortunate Kettlebrook Church donated the trailer and Michael Albiero did the artwork.”

Elevate executive director Mary Simon said the job is challenging but we’re making progress. “It’s exciting to see all our partners in the room celebrating our successes but we have a lot of work ahead.” Coming up Elevate is releasing a tool kit with information about heroin and opiate abuse. “We’re just trying to educate the community on how they’re being affected by drug use,” Simon said.  Elevate is a non-profit organization with a mission to reduce the risk for behavioral health issues and other high-risk behavior.

Farmer’s Almanac for this winter


As neighbors around West Bend debate whether to turn on their heat, let’s take a peek at the Old Farmer’s Almanac to see what’s in store for the wintry months ahead. The 2016 Farmer’s Almanac marks the publication’s 224th anniversary and features daily weather predictions and climatic trends for each season.

According to the region forecast in the upper Midwest, “winter will be much colder than normal, on average, with above-normal precipitation. Very cold weather will be from late December through early February with the snowiest periods in late November, late January, and mid-March.”

The Harris’ Farmer’s Almanac says the “best chance for snow and rain in the north and mainly rain in the south is November 1-2, 9-11, 15-17, and 26-28. Back on Oct. 10, 2009, West Benders saw their first snow of the season with a bit of a flurry   around 11 a.m. The early forecast for the Nov. 29 West Bend Christmas Parade looks to be cloudy and windy with isolated showers.

Staying true to the Almanac motto “Useful, but with pleasing degree of humor” the book includes features on “The biggest moon of our lives, 10 peculiar ‘Laws’ that explain everything, and The most Dangerous Woman in America – Typhoid Mary.” The Winter Solstice or the first day of winter is Dec. 22.

Updates & tidbits

Former West Bend alderman Dale Hochstein, 72, died this week. Hochstein served on the common council in the 1970s.  A celebration of Hochstein’s life will be Saturday, Oct. 17, at 2 p.m. at Grace Reformed Church, 163 19th St. in Fond du Lac.

-Holy Angels Students of the Month for September 2015 include sixth grader Joseph Held, seventh grader Quentin Butschlick and eighth grader Kaya Faehling.

-WBHS culinary instructor Sally Heuer will be recognized Oct. 25 as she receives the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Educational Foundation Teacher of the Year award for her work in the hospitality industry. Heuer initiated the ProStart Program, a nationally-recognized industry-driven curriculum at the West Bend high schools.

– The My School Color Run is Oct. 25 at Badger Middle School in West Bend. The 5K is designed to raise money and have fun instilling a healthy lifestyle. The 5K Color Run is $35 and includes a race bib, color packet, and T-shirt. More information contact Koren Wawrzyn, kwawrzyn@west-bend.k12.wi or stop in the school office.

-The American National Red Cross sold its building, 819 Schoenhaar Drive, to Kellnic, LLC for $299,500. Kellnic owns the building next door. Adam Williquette from Anderson Commercial Group, LLC represented the Red Cross. Mike Sterr of Coldwell Banker Residential represented Kellnic, LLC.

– Looking for $4,550 cash? Spaulding Clinical in West Bend has a new study on tap: Supernova Part 2. Healthy men and women are needed age 18 and older with acne. The study consists of an in-house stay, lasting 15 days/14 nights at its state-of-the-art facility in West Bend. Contact 1-800-597-4507 for more information or log onto

– This week three new police officers were sworn in to the Germantown Police Department including officers Catherine Pierce, Kevin Rollinger and Justin Pesch.

– Leaf collection begins Monday Oct. 19 in West Bend. Neighbors can scrape their leaves into the gutter… ALL the way into the gutter as crews aren’t going to get the pile if you leave it sitting between the sidewalk and the curb. Bags of leaves won’t be collected but you can dump your pumpkin in the gutter and it will be picked up.

– Mark your calendar for the Marching Band Scholarship Concert on Oct. 27 at 7 p.m. at the Silver Lining Arts Center.

-Living Word Lutheran High School hosts its 15th annual dinner auction on Saturday, Nov. 7.  The theme is “A Crystal Clear Night.”  The evening begins at 5 p.m. with a silent auction, raffle games, hors d’oeuvres, and bottomless wine glasses. Dinner is at 7 p.m. followed by the voice auction.  Tickets must be bought in advance at $60 per person.  More information at

-Holy Angels is hosting a Swing Dance at the school Saturday, Oct. 24. Mike Mattek teaches dance at several venues in the area. Holy Angels is raising funds for its Angels on the Road partnership with the WB Taxi and Washington County Taxi.

– Saint Frances Cabrini Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts will be hosting a Hero Party on Oct. 24 in the school multipurpose room from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. and the scouts are looking for some hometown heroes to join in. If you or your family member has served in the military, law enforcement, fire department, or EMS, please stop by for a FREE treat and a chance to interact with the scouts.

-An interactive evening of food and crime Saturday, Nov. 7 at the Old Courthouse Museum for The Trial of Freddy the Fish. A rash of crimes plague 1930’s Washington County and the Sheriff believes he has caught his man, Gangster Freddy “the Fish,” and his gang of thugs from Chicago.  Judge Andy Gonring presides over the trial of the century. Funds raised will support the Washington County Historical Society. Tickets are $45 and available at

Vintage Halloween from Barton School

Today’s 1935 photo, courtesy the Washington County Historical Society, is of students form Barton School. Three years ago, Bill Homuth wrote in because he recognized one of the students.

“That was me dressed as the scarecrow on the top left of the photo,” said Homuth. “My cousin Mickey Ostrander was standing next to me as Mickey Mouse. His real name was Lesley but after that we always called him Mickey,” said Homuth who was later dubbed Big Red.

Homuth said he was in first or second grade at Barton State Grade School in 1935. “My mother was the one who came up with the idea or the scarecrow,” he said. “We had a little party that day with candies and things like that.” Homuth remembered his teacher was Helen Nagel and her dad had a barber shop in Slinger. “In the first couple years I went to school for Halloween we all went to school in costumes,” he said.

Other kids in the photo were Eugene Meyer, the cowboy standing next to Mickey Mouse.

“I recognized Mickey Mouse first and I knew I was standing right next to him,” said Homuth. “The ghost is Marian Schacht.” Originally a three-room school house,  there were only two rooms used at the time. They put the third one in and the teacher that came in was Ruth O’Meara.



0919, 17 October 2015


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