Fotos from the Past
Researched by Michael J. Caylor Jr
Another Merrill attorney has announced his candidacy to replace the retiring Circuit Court Judge Donald Schnabel. J. Michael Nolan, a graduate of Medford, has been practicing law at the Schmitt-Nolan-Hansen and Hartley law firm since 1962. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School and is a member and past president of the Lincoln County Bar Association. Nolan is active in local organizations including the Lions Club, United Way, T.B. Scott Library Board, Jaycee’s, Youth Center Board, Board of Trustees of Menard College, Pine Crest Trustees, and is past president of St. Robert’s Parish Council. He and his wife Barbara have four children.
A freak accident has claimed the life of a Merrill man. Frederick Behrens, 31, of Route 4, was working with a neighbor to free his truck from the ditch on Rainbow Drive early Saturday morning. With Behrens’ truck parked facing west the neighbor parked his truck facing east; the combined headlights blinded a Hamburg man driving by causing him to strike Behrens. The driver was driving at a very slow rate of speed at the time but the collision caused major injuries to Behrens’ lower leg, and he died on arrival at the hospital. Funeral services were held at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Corning.
Senator Gaylord Nelson (D-Wisconsin) was in town this past week. He spoke at Lincoln Lanes and outlined the next session of Congress. Nelson said he is opposed to a proposal by President Carter to increase defense spending by 3%. Nelson went on to say he thinks Carter’s plans to cut the federal deficit by $9 billion does not go far enough, and he would like to see the federal revenue sharing program with states eliminated. Nelson closed by predicting the nation will see a national health insurance program soon but questions remain on how that can be done efficiently with costs low enough to be afforded by the taxpayers.
Santa Claus is coming to town. He will be in Santa’s House in the parking lot of Plawman’s Playhouse in Merrill’s Sixth Ward this Sunday from 1-5 and then again from 6-9 p.m. His trip down from the North Pole is sponsored by these members of the Sixth Ward Business Association: Merrill Evergreen, Bill & Nona’s Floral, Jean’s Beauty Shop, Self-Serve Gas Station, Wilde’s Oil Company, Storm Oil Company, Northern Door, Knotty Pine Bar, Beacon Bar, Ma & Pa’s Silver Spur, Merrill Iron and Steel, Mitchell Metals, Merrill Millwork, Baumgart Waste, Ament & Son’s, The Drapery Den, Seeger’s Dairy, Band Music Repair, Knispel & Latzig, Weisneski Insurance, Schulz’s Wrecking, Otto Engel, Club 64, Co-Op West Station, House of Merrill, People’s IGA, Park City Liquor, Grunty’s Bar, Walk Straight Inn, Semling & Menke, 6th Ward Barber Shop, KB Body Shop, Schendel Dry Goods, Milwaukee Lead Company, Bernies Small Engine Repair, Woodcraft Finishes, Mike & Robin’s Bar, Plawman’s, Woodchip Corp, and Metal Industries of California.
Students at Merrill Area Public Schools are some of the best in the nation, so say the folks at American College Testing. Since 1980 Merrill students have ranked higher than both national average scores and state average scores. This puts them in the top 19% among 5,000 schools in similar size across the United States. According to Kathy Colclasure, guidance counselor at Merrill Senior High School, at least 90 students took the ACT test on the five occasions it was offered locally. Right now 102 are signed up to take the test this December with more signing up for the spring offering. James Boettcher, curriculum director, notes the students in the elementary schools are also improving with their scores in the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. (I do not miss those little ovals)
The Holy Cross Sisters have announced they plan on expanding their care to the community. The entire Sisters’ community recently met to discuss a study of the use of the facility which now is used to house both retired and active members of the Sisters of the Holy Cross. Although exact plans have not been ironed out, the plan would call for use of the facility as an assisted living unit for the elderly who are both independent and dependent on medical care. (No name for the facility yet, but I bet it will ring a “Bell” soon)
It isn’t too late (or early) to start your Christmas shopping. Plenty of Merrill merchants have ads in this week’s paper to give you ideas. Gruett’s Appliance Center suggests a microwave oven, and they have a Magic Chef brand for just $348. Campbell’s Clothing in downtown Merrill has coupons this week with 20% off clothing in most departments. In-Step Shoe store has Hush Puppie shoes for the men at 30% off and women’s armadillo shoes at half off. Trantow’s Building Center wants to give you and your garage door a lift this Christmas with automatic openers start at $139. Miller Home Furnishing has La-Z-Boy recliners starting at $299, VIP Office Supply has all remaining Christmas items at 50% off, the boys at Caylor’s have everything a mother would love for Christmas including an electric can opener for $8.99, an electric knife for $13.99, a clothes iron for $21, a blender for $22, and a toaster for $14. Howland’s Ace Hardware is doing the final week of their toy sale where all toys are now 50% off, and just in time for Christmas the GTE phone mart will set up a gift center in Hargraves Appliance (those are for phones that have wires and attach to walls.)
Norm Heckendorf has reluctantly resigned his position as District 3 Supervisor of the Lincoln County Board. Heckendorf has held the seat since 1992 but has now moved out of the district. Heckendorf has held top spots on committees such as the Personnel, Forestry, and Zoning during his tenure.
Heckendorf is getting off the board as they got down to brass tacks over the future of the jail and the proposed justice center. At the December meeting held yesterday the board voted to postpone the non-binding referendum regarding the site of the project from February to the April election. Chairman Bob Sumnicht stated that since the board cannot even decide on how to word the referendum they need to slow down the process and make a rational decision once things calm down. Controversy surrounding the project heated up last week when Supervisor Melissa Schroeder and Phil Cohrs held a press conference where they called out the board on committee make up, the referendum, and county meeting times. Meanwhile, Sheriff Paul Proulx stated push will come to shove sooner rather than later as he fights the issue of overcrowding in his jail which is already on a short string with the Wisconsin Department of Corrections over the issue of space.
Skippers Restaurant will be closed this Friday for inventory and will reopen on Saturday morning under the new ownership of Wayne (Skip) Ruth Karpenske. Signa Lambrecht sold the business after her husband Bob passed away on Aug. 21 while working at the popular downtown eatery.