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NEWS

4A • COMMUNITY RECORDER/KENTON • MARCH 23, 2017

Cop takes legal guardianship of veteran with dementia Melissa Reinert mstewart@enquirer.com

ERLANGER - Norm, 83, of Erlanger was living alone. The Korean War veteran was recently diagnosed with dementia, but had no family to turn to for help. That’s when Erlanger Police Department’s Jon Sterling stepped up. Sterling, who was made Norm’s legal guardian, started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to help Norm get into a care facility. His goal was to raise $5,500; the entrance fee and first month’s rent. A total of $10,000 was raised in just three days. “It makes me feel awesome, but I knew this would happen,” Sterling said. “The people here in

Erlanger, Elsmere, and Crescent Springs – the Tristate – are good people. Norm deserves this. He deserves a place where he can spend his day comfortably.” Norm just moved into the care facility March 1 and he’s doing “great,” according to Sterling. Sterling met Norm four years ago while responding to a call about a suspicious person that Norm had made. “Norm is a good guy,” Sterling said. “He was always looking out for his neighbors. We became fast friends. We’d run into each other at the store occasionally and just stop and shoot the breeze for hours. He has a largerthan-life personality.” About a month ago,

Sterling learned that Norm had become ill. After receiving guardianship of his friend, he applied for veteran benefits and started looking for a care facility. Between social security and the new veteran benefits, Norm could afford the care he needs, but he didn’t have the money for the down payment. But now, with the help of the community, Sterling said Norm is a very happy man. “It was all about Norm,” Sterling said. “People have praised me for this, but really, it’s not about me. I didn’t do this for me, I did this for Norm and I’m thankful to everyone who contributed or shared our story. Whatever you did to help, words fail. It’s just fantastic.”

THANKS TO JON STERLING

Erlanger Police Department's Sgt. Jon Sterling and Norm.

NKY Health Department consolidation advances partment’s services into one location. “The Health Department anticipates being able to purchase property and build the new facility within existing funds and with no increase in local public health taxes,” said Emily Gresham Wherle, health department public information administrator. The health department’s current district office is in Edgewood. Staff in the new building will be consolidated from four locations: The district office in Edgewood, the Administrative Annex in Fort Mitchell, the lower part of

Melissa Reinert mstewart@enquirer.com

FILE PHOTO

The Northern Kentucky Health Department’s current district office, shown here, is in Edgewood.

chase the land for $540,000. A contract, still in the

works, between the Health Department and Hemmer Construction

calls for a building not to exceed $4.8 million that will consolidate the de-

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See NKY, Page 5A

OH:17761 KY:HM04951

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EDGEWOOD - The Northern Kentucky Health Department’s new Florence headquarters is one step closer to construction. The District Board of Health is completing negotiations with the city to purchase vacant property between the Florence Government Center building and the skate park east of Ewing Boulevard and north of Veterans Memorial Drive. On March 14, Florence City Council voted to allow the department to pur-

the Kenton County Health Center and the lower level of the Boone County Health Center. Wherle said they expect about 95 employees to be based in the new building. The new building will include: Administrative staff, WIC and nutrition administrative staff, health education, oral health, HIV/AIDS case management, and epidemiology and environmental health, Wherle said. The Florence site was chosen last year. According to Wherle, the site has several advantages: estab-

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