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BOOMER times MARCH - APRIL 2013 OF COSHOCTON COUNTY People / Places / Hobbies / Family / Health / Finance

discover your

family history



think spring! page


memories of

the 1913 flood




Local man encourages others to record family history

By Josie Sellers

Boomer Times

FAMILY HISTORY Les Widder has written a book about his family history that




MARCH 13, 2013

he has collected over the years which includes plenty of information and photos. They are on sale to the public for $25 by calling Widder at 622-1138 or emailing PHOTO CONTRIBUTED TO THE BEACON

COSHOCTON – Les Widder is glad he took the time to talk to his father about their family’s history before he passed away. “It’s so important to know your heritage, where you came from and the hardships and joys your ancestors experienced,” Widder said. The stories and information his father shared can be found in Die Widder/Kuenzi Heimat Geschichten, which when translated means The Widder/Kinsey Homeplace Stories.

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“I first started talking to my Dad in April 2011 and about a year later had a book done and printed,” he said. “My dad was the youngest of five, but they all died in their 60s or late 50s. He outlived them all at 94 ½ years old.” Through his research Widder learned about his greatgrandpa and his 13 children, family members passing through Ellis Island and even found a note his grandmother wrote in German about her sister dying. “He also told me about walking three miles to school and that he couldn’t be involved with sports because he had to help do chores at home,” Widder said. “He also only got to go to one basketball game in his entire high school career. Tickets were only $0.25 but they didn’t have the money for that. Things were a lot different than they are today.” Some of the stories he knew and others were new to Widder, but regardless, he was impressed by what was collected for the family’s book. “The older generation didn’t throw things away and Dad could name people off in pictures,” Widder said. “All of this would have been lost if I would not have pursued it. Dad was so pleased to hear that this was going to be passed on for generations to come. He read and read and reread the book.” The copies printed were all passed out to family members and after corrections were made, Widder had more printed in November 2012. “Talk to your parents because once they are gone, they are gone,” he said. “Dad knew who people were and if I wouldn’t have asked, there would just be boxes of pictures that no one knew who was in them.” The book has information from both his mother’s side whose family came from Switzerland and his father’s whose family is originally from Germany. “I wanted to be as equal as I could be to everyone in the family,” Widder said. The books are available to the public for $25 by calling Widder at 622-1138 or e-mailing “It’s all fun to read and now that Dad is gone it’s that much more meaningful,” Widder said. “It was a good project and one I’m glad I did. It is priceless.” JOSIE@COSHOCTONCOUNTYBEACON.COM Are you interested in starting your own family history story? Talk to any surviving relatives about their experiences growing up and make sure to visit the Coshocton Public Library. They have records in their Local History room that may help you on your quest. See more tips on the next page.

Tips to get stated on your family history


Beacon Staff

Research starts with you: Start with yourself and work your way backwards. Ask Mom and Dad: If your parents are alive, get as much information as you can from them. If they are not alive, start looking for birth and death certificates. Other helpful documents: Other helpful documents include: Obituaries, marriage certificates, letters, diaries, church records, Bible records and family photo albums. If the photos you discover are in albums with sticky pages, remove them and put them in archival, nonacid albums. Coshocton Public Library: If your family is from Coshocton County, visit the Coshocton Public Library’s local history room. The room offers lots of great resources for research including newspaper clippings, microfilm machines and more. It also provides examples of charts that you can copy and record your family history on. Browse the Web: Visit websites such as: and . Another good source to get you started is the book, “Who Do You Think You Are?” by Megan Smolenyak. Keep a Journal: Be sure to write down where you get your information from.

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Want to record your family’s history, but not sure how to begin? These helpful tips from members of The Coshocton County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogy Society will help you get started.

To learn more from members of the local Genealogy Society, attend one of their meetings at 7:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month. Most meetings are held in the Coshocton Public Library’s basement meeting room, but March’s will be at the Coshocton Fire Station.

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MARCH 13, 2013

Each Boomer Times will feature an independent or assisted living facility. If you are thinking of downsizing or helping elderly parents move, this is a great place to learn more about housing options in Coshocton or surrounding areas.

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I love Easter! There’s a feeling of renewal and the birds are beginning to sing again and green shoots are appearing with the promise of crocus, daffodil and tulip blooms to follow. My mom would say that she couldn’t wait for Easter to come when she was a kid because it wouldn’t be long until they could put the long black stockings away and go back to anklet socks. When I was a child it also meant a new spring outfit to wear to church and for good, which meant at least a new dress and depending on how much I had grown over the winter, a spring coat and shoes could be added and a new hat. My dad could usually talk mom into getting a new dress and perhaps a purse, but she would usually insist that her hat and coat were good for one more year. So, a Saturday trip to Coshocton was planned and I would always watch as we turned at the corner of Chestnut and Second (where Tim Horton’s) is for the baby chicks and ducks in the front window of the Pocock/Lorenz building. Then on to Main Street where Mom and I would look for clothes at J. C. Penney or Jean Frocks next door and Dad would head into Montgomery Wards or Turner’s Hardware. Then, it was up the street to Newberry’s for hats and a trip downstairs to see the bunnies, chicks and ducks in the pet department. These chicks weren’t just yellow though, they were dyed pink, blue and green to look more festive.

Do you have story ideas or photos for the next issue of Boomer Times? Email us at The next issue of Boomer Times will be out in May.

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Dad would also make a stop at Brungart’s drug store before we headed home and Mom and I weren’t allowed to peek, until Easter morning. Then mom would get a box of Russell Stover chocolates and the Easter bunny would fill my pink wicker basket with a chocolate bunny and assortment of other goodies. Then, it was off to the Methodist church in Spring Mountain for services. It would always be so beautifully decorated with pots of white lilies across the front by the altar. When church was over, we’d head off for Sunday dinner at Grandma Hunter’s or my Aunt Dot’s house, where we kids would change into play clothes. In the afternoon we would hunt eggs or if Easter didn’t come until April and the weather was warm, we would go mushroom hunting. Happy Easter everyone and think spring!



Time for some spring clean-up in the garden

Contributed to the Beacon by Tammi Rogers


The days are growing longer, the birds are returning and you’ve got the itch to get outside! March 20 is the first day of spring. Although it is too early to plant your tomatoes, there are plenty of “housekeeping items” to keep you busy in the garden. If you didn’t trim your roses in the fall, it’s a good time to get that accomplished. Generally, they should be cut back

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MARCH 13, 2013

Boomer Times

There is plenty you can do inside and outside to get ready for gardening season. PHOTO CONTRIBUTED TO THE BEACON

to about 18 inches and leave about three to five good, sturdy canes. Remove any dead, broken or damaged canes and any canes growing in the center of the plant. This allows for sunlight to enter the center of the plant and promotes good air circulation- helping to deter fungal diseases. Deciduous trees and shrubs can also be pruned now. Follow these basic rules of thumb: Prune out dead, diseased or broken branches, any branches that grow toward the middle of the plant- causing branches to rub or cross, and prune to an outward facing bud to encourage outward growth. Birch and maple, however, should not be pruned until they have fully leafed-out. Pruning them now causes them to “bleed” excessively - the sap will flow freely out of the cut area. The best time to trim evergreens is before new growth appears. They can be trimmed at any time, but early spring is the most accepted, and convenient, time. Trees and shrubs with green needles are what we generally consider evergreens. Rhododendrons, azaleas and other broadleaf evergreens varieties should be trimmed after they have bloomed. Pruning evergreens helps to control size and shape and thin out the plant. It directs growth and reduces the threat of disease. The first step in pruning evergreens is to remove any dead or diseased branches. Any crossed or close growing limbs should be pruned out, as well. Next, trim to set the shape of the evergreen for both height and diameter. An evergreen hedge should be pruned so that the bottom is wider than the top. This allows for the plant to receive sunlight at the bottom. To get ahead of Mother Nature’s usual schedule, start seeds inside in the next couple weeks. Then, in six weeks or so, when the weather is warmer, your plants will have gained a head start before setting their roots in the outside soil. I usually start this project six to eight weeks before the frost-free datewhich is about May 15 for Coshocton. Annuals, perennials, summer bulbs and vegetables can all be started inside at this time. The materials you need include: Planting trays or flats, purchased or home-made germinating mix, 2-inch pots and a good lighting source. Once the soil is prepared and the seeds are planted, locate them under a direct light source. Natural sunlight can be sufficient, but more often than not, plants need a stronger source of light. Set plants on a table with a fluorescent bulb suspended on a moveable chain one to three inches above the soil. The light can then be raised as the plants grow in height. Specially designed grow lights and tables are available as well. Starting plants inside can be a lot of fun, especially as the end of winter seems a long way off. Both your plants and you can get a head start on the growing season and be ready when spring does finally arrive. Tammi Rogers is the OSU Extension - Coshocton County Program Asst., Ag & Natural Resources Master Gardener Volunteer Coordinator

GO BUCKS isn’t always enough


In today’s world, you can store your whole life on your hard drive. Photos, banking information, investment portfolios, personal identification, even passwords. Yet, without password protection, everything on your computer is vulnerable to the probing eyes of total strangers. Protecting yourself with secure passwords is important, probably one of the most important computer security measures you can take to protect yourself. Most cases of stolen information occur when a hacker figures out a victim’s password. The important lesson here is weak passwords just aren’t acceptable anymore. You should always steer clear of names of friends, family and pets, phone numbers, birthdays, years of birth of yourself and your children, anniversaries, and especially social security numbers. Hackers have software programs that are capable of scanning dictionaries and word banks to figure out your password, so avoid using words found in dictionaries, even if you can’t speak that language.

Boomer Times

Contributed to the Beacon by Cathy Haynes and Kevin Jones

credit cards, corrupted e-mail, and many more headaches for you to resolve. Password generators are available on the Internet, but remember, hackers can be behind such sites and immediately have your password. Likewise, password security sites are available for you to type in your password and determine its effectiveness. And the same thing is true of hackers for these sites. Two sites that are reliable for these tasks are: com/security/pc-security/password-checker.aspx and www. Protect yourself and your computer, phone, bank accounts, or anything else that needs a password with these simple tips and watch the Buckeyes secure in the knowledge that no one is watching you. Cathy Haynes is the public relations coordinator at the Coshocton Public Library and Kevin Jones is the l ibrary’s technology coordinator

Here are some tips for creating a good password: Good passwords are: • Seven or more characters long. • Not easy to spot while typing, such as 123456789. • Can be typed quickly. • A combination of upper and lower case letters, as well as numbers, punctuation marks, and symbols. Try: • Using the first letters of a phrase or song that has an important meaning to you. “Oh! Come let’s sing Ohio’s praise, and songs to Alma Mater raise” would be “o!clsopastamr.” Insert a number or two, and some punctuation, and you have an airtight password. • Intentionally misspelling a word or phrase. • Changing your password frequently, at least every three months, and don’t reuse passwords. And once you create a secure password, it should never be written down…anywhere.




When an identity thief has your password, he instantly gains access to your phone messages, e-mail, bank account information, credit card information, social security numbers, and any other information you may be trying to keep private. This can lead to cleaned out bank accounts, charges run up on your

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Your New Home Awaits You

Flood of 1913 photos

Contributed to the Beacon by Joe and Donna Kreitzer

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Boomer Times


Lecture and exhibit commemorates 1913 Flood


Contributed to the Beacon

Boomer Times cooperation with the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum and is free of charge; however, donations to defray speakers’ fees are gladly accepted. For information, contact the Roscoe Village Visitor Center at 622-7644 ext.12.



times MARCH 13, 2013


COSHOCTON – The Flood of 1913 was one of the greatest natural disasters in Ohio history. It began on Friday, March 21, 1913, with the first storm comprised of strong winds and warm temperatures. A second storm hit on Saturday, dropping temperatures to the 20s. By Sunday (Easter Day), the land was saturated and nearly all the rain became run off flowing into streams and rivers, and still it continued to rain. Rainfall over the state totaled 6-11 inches. Levees could not contain the water. Nearly all areas of Coshocton County were severely affected (West Lafayette, the exception). Statewide, the death toll was estimated at 467 and more than 40,000 homes were flooded. The anniversary of this flood will be commemorated with an exhibit and lecture at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum. The Flood of 1913 exhibit features enlarged images from a selection of postcards that were collected by Joe and Donna Kreitzer. “We started collecting local cards just from Coshocton 30 years ago,” Joe said. “We bought them at auctions and some from individuals.” The exhibit, sponsored by Joe R. Engle Museum Gallery fund, will be displayed Friday, March 1 through Sunday, April 28, in the Montgomery Gallery. “We like local history and this flood was just so devastating to this county and whole state,” Joe said. He feels it is important to keep local history alive and hopes people take care of any collections they might have. “You have to sort stuff out and put items in boxes and isolated so they don’t end up discarded,” Joe said. The Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum is open from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Admission is $3 for adults, $2 for children and $8 for families. Wednesdays are free for Coshocton County residents. For more on the exhibit, visit , e-mail at or call 622-8710. Roscoe Village also will begin its 2013 lecture series Sunday, March 24, with Dave Neuhardt sharing a slide presentation on the flood at 2 p.m. in the Special Exhibit Gallery at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum. The presentation will be sponsored by Roscoe Village in


RSVP volunteers bring knowledge to community

By Beth Scott

Boomer Times

The Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is for those 55 and over who are interested in giving back to their community through volunteer work. For more information on the program, contact Coshocton County coordinator, Pat Shryock at 622-4852 or email

RSVP member Cindy Lapp is a receptionist and greeter at the Coshocton Christian School. This type of work is in great demand and anyone interested in volunteering their time can contact RSVP Coordinator Pat Shryock at 622-4852 or by e-mail at BEACON PHOTO BY JOSIE


COSHOCTON – If you’re 55 years old or over and would like to volunteer in the community but don’t know where or how to start, consider joining the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) and start volunteering on a job site today. RSVP started in 1972 with just a few senior citizens who wanted to share their knowledge and wisdom with members of the community. Today, the program has grown substantially with about 100 active senior volunteers in the community. “It gives them a good feeling helping the community,” said Pat Shryock, coordinator at the Coshocton Senior Center, who has been involved with RSVP since 1991. “I’ve been here for a while and I’ve really enjoyed working with all the volunteers.” Volunteers in the program must be at least 55 years old to join, and there are a variety of jobs to choose from including more than 20 work sites. Some of their focus areas include

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MARCH 13, 2013


tutoring in schools, health services, housing services, veterans, environmental services, disaster services, and cultural heritage. The group has also been a United Way Agency since 2003. “Education is very important to us,” said Shryock regarding volunteers in the schools. “It’s very important for the kids academically. If they don’t have this help, they’re in danger of not keeping up with the other children.” Volunteers do not have to be from Coshocton. They can also be from West Lafayette, Warsaw, or any of the surrounding county areas. “With the price of gas nowadays, if they come from West Lafayette or Warsaw, we can reimburse them for mileage,” said Shryock. The program also provides accident insurance on all volunteers. More volunteers are currently needed, especially in reception jobs. “When we first started, the volunteers could give more hours,” said Shryock. “Now, they are helping more with grandchildren or traveling, which is good, but they can’t give as much time.” RSVP also has an annual luncheon each year in September or October where they honor past and present volunteers, station supervisors, and board members. “This is a good way for volunteers to make friends too because they’re meeting other people,” said Shryock. For more information or to become a member of RSVP, contact Shryock at 622-4852 or e-mail BETH@COSHOCTONCOUNTYBEACON.COM

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Library lists books to help you care for aging parents


Contributed to the Beacon by Holli Rainwater

MARCH 13, 2013

My Mother, Your Mother: Embracing “Slow Medicine,” the Compassionate Approach to Caring for your Aging Loved Ones by Dennis McCullough, M.D. Geriatrician Dennis McCullough has spent his life helping fami-



Memory Lessons: A Doctor’s Story by Jerald Winakur Dr. Winakur writes about what it’s like to be medical counselor to countless patients, while disclosing his personal heartbreak at watching his 86-year old father descend into disability and dementia, his mother at his side. A doctor who does his best to listen carefully to each patient in turn, who attempts to confront every problem with, as he says, “a reasonable fund of knowledge, a modicum of common sense, and a large dose of honesty,” Dr. Winakur knows that there is much we can do by loving and listening.

The West Lafayette Branch Library is located at 601 E. Main St, West Lafayette and is open Monday - Wednesday: 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Thursday - Friday: Noon - 5 p.m.; and Saturday: 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Contact them at 545-6672


The Essential Guide to Caring for Aging Parents by Linda Rhodes This book has it all: Figuring out what needs your parents have; developing a caregiver plan; managing stress; tapping in to caregiving resources; common legal matters and how to work through them; managing hospitalizations and dealing with insurance; end of life care; and managing family dynamics with siblings. Packed with practical tips and reassuring guidance, Rhodes demonstrates why she’s the leading voice in the field of helping children care for aging parents.

The Coshocton Library is located at 655 Main St, Coshocton and is open Monday - Wednesday: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.; Thursday and Friday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; and Saturday: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Contact them at 622-0956


How to Care for Aging Parents by Virginia Morris Compassionate, timely, thorough, and thoroughly researched this book offers help for every difficult decision: Finding good medical care; dealing with guilt; home care vs. a nursing home; redefining parent/child roles; getting power of attorney; coping with dementia; the hospice option; etc. It also includes a complete yellow pages of resources.

Holli Rainwater is the outreach coordinator at the Coshocton Public Library

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Caring for your Parents: The Complete AARP Guide by Hugh Delehanty and Elinor Ginzler This book lays out proven methods for helping your aging parents live their lives to the fullest. The authors lead you step by step along an innovative path to caregiving—one that deepens the intergenerational bond, transforming an undeniable duty into a journey of spiritual growth and personal discovery. Included are discussions on how to bring up the subject of caregiving; how to be your parent’s best advocate; money matters; the medicare maze; living arrangements; and caring for the caregiver.

lies to cope with their parents’ aging and eventual final passage, experiences he faced with his own mother. In this comforting and much needed book, he recommends a new approach, which he terms “Slow Medicine.” Shaped by common sense and kindness, grounded in traditional medicine yet receptive to alternative therapies, Slow Medicine teaches how to attend to an elder’s changing needs rather than waiting for crises that force acute medical interventions.

Boomer Times

Caring for parents as they age is a task that most Baby Boomers will face. For both generations, this is a complex passage—a time of burden and reward, of conflict and reconciliation, of frustration, fulfillment, and finality. Below are some books that may assist in this process. They are all available through the Coshocton Public Library and the West Lafayette Branch Library.


Use collard greens to help you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day Until recently, I had not ever really had “Southern” Collard Greens and Ham, so I got creative and experimented with a couple of different recipes and this is what I came up with that has lots of flavor. I think this is a great meal to serve on St. Patrick’s Day, the color is perfect and it is usually still cold and damp so this dish will warm the heart and soul. Happy St. Patrick’s Day and welcome spring! Collard Greens, Turnips, & Ham with Pepper Vinegar Serves 8 – 10 6 cups water 1 large ham hock (about 1 ¼ pounds) 3 pounds collard greens 1 pound turnips Pepper Vinegar (recipe follows) In a 6 quart Dutch oven or kettle place ham hock in water and bring to a boil. Water will not cover ham hock completely. Simmer for 1 hour, covered. Turn ham hock over halfway through cooking. While ham hock is simmering, remove and discard stems and center ribs of collard greens. Cut leaves into 1 inch pieces. Stir collards into hock mixture and simmer partially covered, until almost tender, about 45 minutes. Cut turnips into ½ inch cubes. Stir turnips into collards and simmer, partially covered until turnips are tender about 15-20 minutes. Season col-

Pepper Vinegar Makes about 1 ½ cups vinegar ¼ cup rice wine vinegar 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 2 teaspoons honey ½ teaspoon whole black peppercorns Salt ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons canola or olive oil Water if needed

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Collards and turnips may be cooked 8 hours ahead and cooled completely before being chilled and covered. Reheat collards and turnips before serving.

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lards and turnips with salt and pepper. Top with Pepper Vinegar Sauce for a tangy punch of flavor.

Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until emulsified. Add water if the sauce is too thick. Store in a glass jar in refrigerator.





MARCH 13, 2013

Boomer Times

Contributed to the Beacon by Jenny Wilson

March-April 2013 Boomer Times  
March-April 2013 Boomer Times  

Boomer Times for March-April 2013