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1452, 18 Nov 17

Around the Bend by Judy Steffes

Fond memories at St. Joseph’s Hospital reunion

 The 19th annual St. Joseph’s Hospital reunion was held recently at the Top of the Ridge at Cedar Community. Over 100 former and current employees attended to share stories and memories of the old community hospital on Silverbrook and Oak Street.

Barb Shier was a registered nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital for 38 years. She recalled the days of the “hometown hospital” were you “knew your coworker’s families.”

Shier remembered Jim Phillips, from Phillips Funeral Home, driving the ambulance. “Ambulance rides when we would transfer patients were always dramatic,” she said.

There was also winters when the helicopter would land.

“When the helicopters would come pick up the patients we didn’t have a helicopter pad so the maintenance men would plow the parking lot and they would make sure it stayed clear until the chopper landed,” said Shier. “We’d put on our coats and push the gurney through the parking lot and that was the beginning of a new trend.” Shier retired in May 2014.

Rex Melius was born at St. Joseph’s Hospital and was a patient twice in the 1950s. “I remember the Roy Rogers themed rooms. I also remember a certain nun who would come visit the children with her pet parakeets. They’d be on her shoulders or flying down the hall following her into our rooms. Great story…”

Molly Erickson was a clinical educator at St. Joe’s and Linda Jansen was a RN in 1982. The pair recollected some of their favorite memories working at the local hospital including sightings of ghosts.

“After the patients were in a rehab situation they would be transferred to the sub-acute area and many of the nuns stayed there,” said Erickson. “Patients or visitors would say ‘I saw a nun down the hallway in their whole garb but there were no nuns in the building anymore.”

“My husband, Al Jansen, worked in housekeeping and maintenance and he would tell me stories of various things the nuns and their communion wines,” said Jansen. “There was only one nun there when I was working.”

There was also the time in October 2000 when nurse Karen Pufahl had Washington County prisoner Thomas Ball as a patient.

“He ran out naked and ran across the street and stole a car,” said Jansen.

“Then the hospital gave us lessons on ‘you have no business tackling a patient,’” said Erickson. “And they installed safety buttons to alert authorities. We were instructed to direct people to the nearest exit.”

Ball escaped the hospital and stole a vehicle from a woman in the area of Silverbrook Drive. Ball drove to Cedarburg where he crashed the car and fled into a field. He was shot in the bare butt by authorities.

One of the most familiar faces at the hospital was Sue McCullough; she held many positions during her 44 years at St. Joe’s. She started as a staff nurse in 1971 and also worked as a physician and administration liaison.

McCullough remembered Christmas parties where staff brought potluck and performed skits.

There were charity bowling and softball games between hospital staff and police or local media.

“We were the Hospital Hot Handlers vs. the Mighty Media Men,” she said. “Myself and a couple nurses were the cheerleaders and we wore our duty shoes and nurses hats and white sweatshirts with big red crosses.”

McCullough also remembered certain things about the old, old part of the hospital.

“At the original old building the ambulance entrance was on the basement level and the emergency room was on the third floor,” she said. “They would page 777 and that meant somebody had to go down to the basement to meet the ambulance and take them up to the ER.

“As a young nurse, having to go down to that creepy basement. There were always rescue squad guys to help us.”

St. Joe’s, according to McCullough, also had a lot of firsts. “I was reading the instruction manual on how to use an external pacemaker while the doctor was inserting it,” she said. “It was our first time using but it was successful and the patient did well.”

“I know Dr. Richard Gibson had to make things because we didn’t have all the equipment,” she said. “We had to sharpen needles back then too. It was about two years after I started they got disposable needles.”

McCullough also recalled Sr. Frieda who didn’t have much faith in her. “She thought I was too young to work on her unit and she had me folding rags and sharpening needles for most of my shift even though I took care of the cardiac monitors on my floor,” she said.

During a speech to Rotary, McCullough described St. Joe’s as a hidden jewel.” It’s constantly evolving,” she said. “It’s state of the art with the biggest advances in safety and infection control.”

Evidenced by the turnout at the reunion McCullough said, “The bottom line is we liked each other. We helped each other out and rallied if anybody needed us for anything – whether in the hospital or personal.”

Sale price for Ponderosa and groundbreaking set for Pizza Ranch

Groundbreaking is Tuesday, Nov. 21 at noon for the new Pizza Ranch, 2020 W. Washington Street in West Bend.  Matt and Stacy Gehring purchased the old Ponderosa and they will begin to remodel and add to the building with the hope of being open in March/April 2018.

Steve Kilian sold the property to the Gehrings for $850,000. Kilian purchased the property Oct. 24, 2011 for $920,700. Prior to that D. Putz had purchased it in 2009 for $920,689.

Deer hunting approved in two city parks in West Bend

The West Bend Common Council voted 5 – 2 Monday night with one alderman absent (Dist. 2 Steve Hutchins) approving a resolution to allow hunting in two city parks under strict rules that must still be approved by Council.

The hunting measure is designed to help manage the deer herd in the city. The resolution below details how only adult bow hunters who pass a proficiency test will be allowed to hunt during a four day time span in January 2018.

The only parks where this will be allowed as a test is Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park. The deer committee still has to come back to the council with official rules on the effort.

The two aldermen voting against the resolution include Dist. 4 alderman Chris Jenkins and Dist. 8 aldermen Roger Kist.


A Resolution Establishing Nuisance Hunt and Deer Management Committee within the City of West Bend

WHEREAS, the City of West Bend has determined there to be an over-population of deer within the City, and

WHEREAS, the City has determined that the over-population of deer constitutes a nuisance endangering the safety and property of the citizens of West Bend, and

WHEREAS, the City has considered a variety of mitigation tactics for the deer population.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Common Council of the City of West Bend, Washington County, Wisconsin, as follows:

  1. City shall allow a limited regulated nuisance hunt on the conditions established herein to mitigate the deer population of the City.
  2. City shall apply for 20 nuisance permits through the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to be used during the period of January 10th to January 14th, 2018 in the following parks: Lac Lawrann Conservancy and Ridge Run Park.
  3. The Deer Management Committee shall be established to manage and regulate the hunt. The Committee shall consist of eight (8) members serving on a year-to-year basis appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Common Council. Members shall have expertise relating to hunting and/or the parks system and need not be a citizen of West Bend. The Mayor appoints and Council approves the following initial members of the Committee: Steve Hutchins, John Butschlick, Paul Schleif, Chris Dymale, Larry Polenski, Joanne Kline, Duane Farrand and Michael Jentsch.
  4. All hunters shall be adult citizens of the City and shall pass a proficiency test established by the Committee. Upon passage of the proficiency test, hunters shall be entered into a random lottery for hunting locations and permits.
  5. The Committee shall determine the specific hunting locations within each park. One randomly selected hunter shall be assigned to each designated location in the Committee’s discretion. The Committee may also randomly select alternate hunters to be assigned in the Committee’s discretion.
  6. Baiting shall be allowed for two weeks prior to the hunt as allowed by the rules and regulations established by the Committee.
  7. Each hunter shall be issued nuisance permits for the designated location. The hunter may bow hunt or crossbow hunt for deer from a tree stand. All shots taken shall have a downward trajectory.
  8. Each hunter shall notify the West Bend Police Department prior to entering the stand location and upon leaving the stand location.
  9. The Committee shall be responsible for determining safety regulations for the hunt, including but not limited to, closing a portion or all of a designated park to the public for the duration of the hunt.
  10. Hunters may keep one deer. All other harvested deer shall be donated to local food pantries through Wisconsin DNR’s established program.
  11. All rules established by the Committee shall be in full compliance with state and federal law, the Municipal Code of the City of West Bend, and the terms and conditions contained in this Resolution.
  12. Violation of any rule established herein or by the Committee may result in lifetime revocation of all future hunting privileges or other civil or criminal liability.
  13. This Resolution shall be reviewed by the Common Council prior to the commencement of the 2018-2019 hunting season.

Passed and Approved the 13th day of November, 2017

Cards for Veterans at West Bend Memorial Library

The American Legion Post 36 of West Bend will again sponsor the “Cards for Veterans” program at the West Bend Memorial Library. From Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 15, patrons visiting the library will find a display of Christmas and holiday cards. All are encouraged to select a card, write a message to a veteran, and place the sealed cards in the box provided.  There is no cost for this service. On Dec. 15, the cards will be distributed to veterans living in the West Bend area. Donations of cards would be greatly appreciated.

Six candidates in the mix to fill Assembly District 58

Six candidates have now filed information with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission to run in the upcoming Special Election to fill the vacant seat in the 58th Assembly District.

Republican candidates include (in order of filing) Steve Stanek, Tiffany Koehler, Spencer Zimmerman, and this week Washington County Board Chairman and Village of Slinger Trustee Rick Gundrum threw his hat in the mix.

Two other candidates include Dennis Degenhardt who is running as a Democrat and Christopher Lewis Cook who is with the Independent, Socialist Party.

All candidates must collect between 200 – 400 signatures. Nomination papers are due no later than 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017 in the offices of the Wisconsin Elections Commission.

Gov. Walker set a primary for Dec. 19, 2017. The Special Election will be held Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. The 58th Assembly District includes the communities of Slinger, Jackson, Town of Polk, parts of Richfield, Town of Trenton and West Bend. The seat in the 58th became vacant following the unexpected death of Rep. Bob Gannon. His term expires January 7, 2019.

It’s beginning to look at lot like Christmas in Downtown West Bend

The West Bend Christmas Parade is Sunday, Nov. 26 and early Thursday morning volunteers from the DIVA group, Downtown West Bend Association and the city of West Bend spent a couple hours decorating the downtown Main Street for the holiday.

Brilliant red bows and green wreaths were strung across the roadway and white lights and red ribbons were hung on the lampposts. A big thanks to Brian Culligan at West Bend Tap and Tavern and Hankerson’s Country Oven Bakery for the hot coffee and fuel after the morning effort. Many hands made for quick work. Now mark your calendar for Sunday, Nov. 26 and the annual West Bend Christmas Parade. This year’s theme is Christmas Memories.

Testing the lights at Enchantment in the Park

There were nine volunteers hoofing around Regner Park on Wednesday night, bracing against the wind and taking notes as Mike Phillips led a turning-on-the-lights tour of Enchantment in the Park. “Now this key, the longest key in the bunch, opens this door,” he said.

Phillips was wearing a headlamp – something he recommended for the job. “Flip the switches with the blue tape,” Phillips said. “This will obviously be much faster because you can make these rounds in the car.”

The group walked in the dark from one segment of the display to the next. Through the warming house and down into the bowels of the Strachota stage. It smelled musty and old and looked like a bomb shelter. It was awesome!

Enchantment in the Park at Regner Park in West Bend kicks off Friday, Nov. 24. The annual light show collects money and food donations for food pantries across Washington County and Menomonee Falls. Be sure to make note – the popular Disney night is Thursday, Dec. 7. Husar’s Diamond Dash is Sunday, Dec. 3.

Update & tidbits             

– The celebrity bell ringer for the Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign is Tinker the miniature horse. He and owners Carol and Jim Tackes will at the Washington County Fair Park today, Nov. 18, from noon – 2 p.m. The miniature horse is one of the more popular attractions for the Salvation Army. Donations will be collected through Christmas Eve. The goal this year is $3.8 million and all money raised stays local.

– Moonlighting in Barton will be ringing in the holidays with a Black Friday Meat Raffle on Nov. 24. There will be a raffle every 15 minutes between 2 p.m. – 5 p.m. Lake States Vending will be donating all the meat and proceeds will go to the Gingerbread House, a local organization in its 18th year of providing Christmas gifts to families across Washington County. Stop in and check out the Black Friday Meat Raffle at Moonlighting, 326 Commerce Street in Barton.

-Help is available to families in Washington County that need assistance with winter heating bills. Contact Kay Lucas with the Washington County Human Services Department which oversees the Energy Assistance Program. The number is 262-335-4677.

-Contractors in fluorescent yellow jackets and hardhats can be seen pouring cement and working on scaffolding as the $3.2 million expansion is underway at Good Shepherd Lutheran, 777 S. Indiana Avenue in West Bend. The expansion will include four additional school classrooms and renovated bathrooms. There’s also going to be a new welcome center and gathering space.

– The 3rd Annual West Bend Santa Ramp-up kicks off at 10 a.m. at Dublin’s on Sunday, Nov. 26. Get your red on and join the ride. Other stops include King Pin Bowl & Ale House (11 a.m.), Moonlighting (12 p.m.), West Bend Tap and Tavern (1 p.m.), and The Norbert (2 p.m.). Santa or Christmas attire recommended. Safe biking practices! Come out and kick off the holiday season at one or all the stops!

– There will be a traditional tree lighting Tuesday, Dec. 5 at Berndt Park in Hartford and the much loved Annual Hartford Historical Home Tours are set for Saturday, Dec. 9.

Buy your ticket today from the West Bend Sunrise Rotary and have a chance at a $5,000 grand prize. Drawing is Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. at Enchantment in the Park. Tickets available at Jeff’s Spirits on Main, Pleasant Valley Tennis & Fitness and any Sunrise Rotary member.

– The annual VFW Essay contest is underway. The Patriot’s Pen Contest is for all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  The theme is “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The Grand Prize is $5,000.  The Voice of Democracy Contest is for all high school students.  The theme is “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” The Grand Prize is a $30,000 scholarship.


1452, 18 November 2017


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