National Catholic Forester

Summer 2015

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Summer 2015 — 11 Fraternalist Year OF THE 2015 Vera Wiest is a 68-year member of St. Mary Court 657 in Fort Atkinson, Iowa. As Fraternalist of the Year, Mary will receive a $100 donation from the Home 2IŅFHWRJRWRZDUGVWKHSDULVKPLQLVWU\ of her choice! Vera is presently serving as vice president and has been historian for several years – collecting and making a history book for Court 657. She attended many conventions throughout the state, helped clean and prepare St. John's Cemetery for Memorial Day and participated at the memorial service at the visitation for deceased members and marched at their Celebrations of Life funeral Mass. Vera was involved with the Soup with Santa event held as a Hearts and Hands project during WKHŅUVWZHHNRI'HFHPEHUVHOOLQJ UDIņHFKDQFHVZLWKSURFHHGVJRLQJ to the public library. The fraternal program promotes the love, warmth and care Vera gives her family and all those around her. Her enthusiasm is contagious as is her caring smile and laughter. Vera is always willing to step up if anyone is in need of help, driving friends to visit nursing homes and other appointments. COMMUNITY AND PARISH SERVICE Vera helps at the Senior Citizens Meal Site in Fort Atkinson, serving on the set up committee for 4 months each year, twice a week. She also volunteered for 25 years, serving as secretary at the present time. As a faithful 65- year member of St. John Nepomocene Church in Fort $WNLQVRQ9HUDKHOGWKHRIŅFHRISDULVK president and secretary. She was helpful with all rendezvous activities and fund raisers for the parish. She is presently serving her 8th year as chairperson for LifeServe Blood Center Blood Drives, sponsored by the Fort Atkinson Community, held 6 times each year. She has donated over 9 gallons and encourages people of all ages to donate, if eligible. A pint of blood can save 3 lives. She sends advertisements to the newspapers and places advertising posters in the local business places. She recruits a wonderful group of volunteers to help set up, take down, make sandwiches and serve in the canteen. As of April 27th the community drive has saved 4,900 lives. Vera is also a volunteer for the Back Pack Program during the school year, bagging non-perishable food which is delivered to local schools for children in need. Vera is a 60-year member of Huber- Steffes Unit 672 of the American Legion Auxiliary in Fort Atkinson, holding the unit treasurer position for the past 25 years. She's the membership chairperson, in charge of poppy distribution and contacting the hostess for the monthly meetings. She also held the unit president & secretary position. Vera enjoys serving the veterans and WKHFXUUHQWWURRSVRXWWKHUHŅJKWLQJIRU our freedom. For 40 years she volunteered at the Winneshiek Medical Center Gift Shop each month. She has been an RSVP member for 11 years. Worked at the local public library with the story hour. Also read at St. Benedict's School in Decorah to the 1st & 2nd graders. She served as Winneshiek County president several terms. ABILITY TO MOBILIZE GENERATIONS She was school secretary for 30 years before retiring & has a great love for the youth of the world. She's retired for 24 years and still meets some of the former students and they will always recognize and greet her with a big smile and often a hug. She has encouraged many of them to live a happy adulthood. Members of St. Mary Court 657 of the National Catholic Society of Foresters have chosen to honor Vera Wiest as their court's Fraternalist of the Year 2015. She was chosen for her ambitious approach to the tasks set before her. Her willingness to accept any challenge LVGHŅQLWHO\DQDWWULEXWHRIDIUDWHUQDOLVW Vera is a dedicated, willing, and friendly member of the Society & truly deserves this honor. Vera Wiest is our 2015 Fraternalist of the Year! The Fraternalist of the Year is an honor presented by NCSF to recognize an individual who, through example and accomplishments, provided outstanding volunteer service to their court, our Society, and the local community. Mary is an incredible example of love, benevolence and charity in action!

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