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Risen Son Christian Village salutes active seniors over 70! We agree.

A lot can happen after 70.

And we want to do what we can to help make those things happen. Consider joining those who have started a new era in their lives here at Risen Son Christian Village. As a faith-based continuing care retirement community, we strive to provide quality compassionate care in a loving, Christian environment. Our staff’s commitment to excellence ensures an enriched lifestyle, while providing assistance and care as your needs change. We invite you to schedule a tour and see first hand why our residents call Risen Son Christian Village their home.

Providing: • Garden Homes • Memory Care • Garden Apartments • Reclaim Rehabilitation • Skilled Nursing • Much more!

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503• (712) 366-9655 •

2F Sunday, April 27, 2014

Larry DeChant

The Daily Nonpareil

‘In order to be a part of the community, you really have to get involved in everything the community is involved in. I’ve been involved in education in Council Bluffs for a long time.’ Scott Stewart


arry DeChant may not have seen it all, but he’s seen quite a bit of it. The 76-year-old retired educator led the ribbon-cutting for the Mall of the Bluffs, and in nearly four decades with the Council Bluffs Chamber of Commerce saw Council Bluffs blossom with countless businesses openings, with the greyhound track and eventually casinos becoming part of the community, with downtown being rejuvenated by the renovation of Bayliss Park. He was a principal in the Council Bluffs Community School District for 33 years, including 21 years at the helm of Kirn Middle School, where he once met the president of the United States to be honored for running one of the highest-achieving schools in the country. He has been a guiding force for thousands in the community, guiding elementary and middleschool students and coaching student-teachers as they prepare to enter the classroom. That’s without the numerous other lives he’s impacted through civic organizations like the Rotary Club, Kiwanis Club and Lions Club, among others. In retirement, DeChant has remained active Staff photo/Joe Shearer in the community, sharing his knowledge and his Former school principal Larry DeChant has remained active in his retirement by volunteering his time in various local organizations. time to continue to guide Council Bluffs on the path toward a future firmly rooted in its past. He recently finished his third term on the Council Bluffs Art Council Board of Directors, and he’s served on the board of Iowa Western Community College’s Art Center since the building opened. He is also a member of Iowa Western’s VIP Ambassadors program. “We support and promote the college,” he said. DeChant oversees student-teachers from Buena Vista University and, occasionally, Morningside College. He typically has two to six students he is working with at any given time. “I help them be successful in that student-teacher experience,” he said. “It’s really kind of neat to be able to see what’s happening in the metropolitan area for education.” DeChant’s also been a member of the Cee Bee Ambassadors through the Council Bluffs Chamber of Commerce since the 1970s, helping conduct ribbon-cutting celebrations and networking events. “I’m probably the member who has been there the longest,” he said. “I have been very active since I left education.” He began getting involved in the Council Bluffs community when he and his wife Dottie moved here in 1968. He was a teacher for a year, and then he began a career as an administrator in several buildings throughout the school district. “In order to be a part of the community, you really have to get involved in everything the community is involved in,” he said. “I’ve been involved in education in Council Bluffs for a long time.” During his time at Kirn, DeChant said one standout memory was meeting President Ronald Reagan after the school was identified by the U.S. Department of Education as one of the highest-achieving schools in the country. Kirn was among 262 secondary schools that Reagan called “Olympians of the classroom” in 1984, showing “there’s nothing we can’t do if we set our minds to it.” Retirement has meant keeping busy for DeChant, but he said the flexibility to travel and spend time with his daughters and grandchildren has been the biggest reward. So even though he’s involved and working part-time, he’s able to use his time as he wants. “You’re not tied down to a job you have to go to every week,” he said. “You have a lot of control over your life in many ways.” He and his wife work out three times a week at The Center, making sure they maintain their health and stamina to do what they want. He also spends time doing outdoor work and reading, often on a deck he designed at his house on Charles Park Drive. “We keep really active,” DeChant said. “I’ve really enjoyed all the things that I have done.”

DeChant not slowed by retirement

Larry DeChant

Thank you for your years of dedicated service and congratulations on this well-deserved honor! ~ Your friends on the Iowa Western Arts Center Advisory Committee & VIP Ambassadors

Congratulations to Mr. Larry DeChant… Thank you for your service to students as a Teacher and Principal for more than 32 years in the Council Bluffs Community School District! Mr. DeChant served at Gunn, Carter Lake, Dodge, Peterson, Glendale, Washington and Kirn.

Lowell and Dixie Burkum

live in Risen Son’s Garden Homes where they enjoy the perks of their easily accessible home. Lowell was born in Ladysmith, WI while Dixie hails from Neligh, NE, where they first met. The couple married in 1955 and have five children, 14 grandchildren, and seven great grandchildren. The couple shares a passion for music. Lowell directs the Golden Chorale, a choir at Risen Son, and also sings in Risen Son’s Gospel Quartet. He used to sing with the Watchmen Quartet, where Dixie accompanied him for over 30 years. They have been happy residents of Risen Son for 8 years and they couldn’t say enough good things about the place.

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •

The Daily Nonpareil

Sunday, April 27, 2014

‘I’m 75 going on 76, but I just tell people I’m 70 and a half.’ George Epperson Tim Johnson


eorge Epperson is halfway through his 70s. “I’m 75 going on 76, but I just tell people I’m 70 and a half,” he said. Epperson and his wife, Joyce, have lived in a duplex at Risen Son Christian Village for about three years. “We like it out here very much,” he said. “It’s peaceful. The people are nice.” Epperson has proven helpful with both work and play at Risen Son. Every Monday and Thursday morning, he drives a tractor with a cart hitched on to collect garbage in the village. Other volunteers pick up the bags and toss them onto the trailer, he said. He backs up to the loading dock outside the kitchen, and the men put the trash into a compactor. “We do this cold days, warm days, holidays – whenever,” he said. Epperson also serves on the Lifestyle Committee helping to plan field trips, activities, special projects and menus for monthly dinners. “Every Tuesday morning, we have coffee, and the lifestyles coordinator, Crystal, goes over what’s going on through the week,” he said. Right now, the committee is working on a cookbook and plans to celebrate the village’s 25th anniversary, Epperson said. His role will be to proofread the material, which will be sent to the Christian Home Association for printing. He volunteered to teach a beginning billiards class, which he did for a year. “Once a year, we’ll have a tournament,” he said. “It’s a super game.” Staff photo/Joe Shearer Epperson has placed second, first and third George Epperson volunteers his time in various capacities at Risen Son Christian Village where he lives with his since moving to Risen Son. This past year, he wife, Joyce. took over responsibility for the Curmudgeon Board, which has photos and information on Risen Son’s top pool sharks. He also taught other residents to play cribbage and the Dominos game known as Mexican Choo Choo. Epperson volunteers in the community, as well – especially at Epworth United Methodist Church, which the couple attends. He ushers, serves on the finance committee and is a former member and chairman of the administrative council. Epperson, son of Haney Epperson and Ruth (Cox) Epperson, was born Oct. 28, 1938, in Council Bluffs. His parents were farming in the Pacific Junction area at the time, but doctors were hard to come by. “When Mom decided it was time for me to be born, they went to Glenwood, but the doctor was gone – he was on vacation or something,” he said. “They decided they’d come to Council Bluffs to her folks’,” he said. Ruth Epperson’s father, George Cox, recruited Dr. Matt Tinley to deliver the baby. “He went in and looked at Mom, and he came back out and told Grandpa, ‘I’ll be done here in about 10 minutes and, if you could have a sandwich ready and George, if you could have a beer, I’ll have lunch with you.’ And that’s exactly what happened.” Epperson’s family moved to Council Bluffs in May 1941, when Cox got his father a job at Union Pacific Railroad. Haney Epperson was a member of the National Guard unit at Glenwood but, when Pearl Harbor was bombed on Dec. 7 of that year, he was exempt from military service because he was a railroad employee. “If he’d stayed on the farm, he’d have been in World War II,” George Epperson said. The family did move around the city quite a bit. Epperson attended kindergarten through third grade at the old Second Avenue School, which is now Edison Elementary. He attended fourth through sixth grades at Franklin, seventh grade at Rue and graduated from eighth grade at Longfellow in 1952. His father wanted their next move to be to the West End. “He had put a down-payment on a house on the West End and hadn’t sold the house on the South Side,” Epperson said. “If the river had gone out, he’d have been done.” But they were able to sell the house on the south side and move to the one on the West End, so he attended Thomas Jefferson High school and graduated in 1956. Although Epperson was offered a scholarship at a Boston university, his family couldn’t afford his travel and living expenses, so he enlisted in the Army. After his service, he became an electrician’s apprentice at Union Pacific. The youngest of eight apprentices, he was eventually bumped and, after being out of work for four or five months, got a job at Pottawattamie County Mutual Insurance Association, where he stayed for almost 30 years. He left after purchasing the Alibi tavern, where he ended up working 17-hour days. “I found out real quick I was too old for that,” he said. Epperson sold the bar in 1989 and got a traffic safety grant position at the county attorney’s office. After the three-year grant ran out, he signed up at a temporary placement agency and got a part-time job at Kiewitt Construction Co. filling in for a woman on maternity leave. When she returned, he was able to get a full-time job in another department. A few years later, when Harveys was preparing to open a casino in Council Bluffs, Epperson called Verne Welch, who had grown up with him on the West End, and asked about applying for a dealer’s job. He became a dealer at Harveys Casino-Hotel, where he worked for five years before retiring in 2000. “That was probably the best job I had,” he said. “You were in contact with the people and, when you cleared the table, you were done.” Epperson and his wife had both lost sisters in 1999, he said. “We decided that was it – we were going to enjoy life a little,” he said. “I had a good life.” The couple had two sons, who now live in Council Bluffs and Minneapolis. They have seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Epperson stays active at Risen Son


George Epperson

Thank you for your continued contributions to the Church & Community!

Epworth United Methodist Church Sunday Worship: Traditional/Contemporary Blend: 10 AM Sunday School: 9 AM

Handicap Accessible 2447 Ave. B


He’s always been the King! , s n o i t a l u t Congra George on your 7 over 70 nomination! We really appreciate all you do here on campus and for helping to keep our village community members active and engaged.

Pictured: Ge orge and his Joyce Eppers wife, on, as Valen ti n es Day Village King and Queen.

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •


4F Sunday, April 27, 2014

Jan Husmann

The Daily Nonpareil

‘Books are very important. There is that time with parents, grandparents and others that goes with children’s books. It’s having that physical contact with them.’

Staff photo/Joe Shearer

Retired kindergarten teacher Jan Husmann buys books for children with money out of her own pocket.



Husmann Emanuel Lutheran Church

ven though Jan Husmann retired as a teacher years ago, she continues to share with others her love of books, especially those for children. “Books are very important,” she said. “There is that time with parents, grandparents and others that goes with children’s books. It’s having that physical contact with them.” Not surprisingly, Husmann was holding a children’s book as she spoke and went through the pages pointing to the artwork, in this case a large cricket, as well as the words and the pattern of words that little ones can become familiar with. When she turned the last page, suddenly the sound of a cricket seemed to come out from the ground. Husmann, 73, retired in 1999 from the Lewis Central School System where she taught for 26 years, mostly in kindergarten. To ensure that children today and in the future know the joy of books like she shared with her own students, Husmann shops weekly to purchase children’s books with her own money. No, she doesn’t go to the most expensive shops, but rather to thrift stores mostly. That in itself is another way she gives back to the community because these stores provide their profits to charities or health-related causes. It’s also a way of recycling used materials, she added. Though these books can be priceless for opening up a world of knowledge for the little ones, most of the books Husmann finds cost very little, some only a dime. “I don’t think I spend more than $10, usually just $5 or $6. For me, it shows what people can do for very little money.” Among the places Husmann donates these books are in the waiting rooms at doctors and dentists offices, she said. It’s a successful practice because children are taking them home to read, she added. Husmann does a lot more. She’s very active at her church, Emanuel Lutheran, which includes putting out collection boxes for school and art supplies, then coordinates the transfer of these items to the Phoenix House and MICAH House. Husmann helps collect coats and mittens for MOHM’s Place. She sets the tables for large church gatherings, also. However, she wanted to make one thing clear. “It isn’t just me.” Husmann is also a member of the church’s Wider Ministry Group that performs various community functions. For example, the group is involved in a summer camp for children whose parent or parents are currently incarcerated. Currently, they are collecting beach wear for those children for swimming. The group is also involved in helping women recently released from prison get back on their feet. “I’d rather be the second person behind the scenes,” she said. When she’s not helping her fellow residents, Husmann enjoys gardening. Her husband, John, has also been involved in the children’s scene, portraying Santa Claus for many years. “I just do it,” she said of her many community activities.

continues to share JAN HUSMANN Service Church her joy Community of books

would like to thank & congratulate

for her generous & continued to her

and her

Visit: to learn more on our weekly services & events.

2444 N. Broadway 712-323-9665

Roberta and Ian Hoover

live in Risen Son’s Garden Apartments on the third floor, where they get to enjoy the aspects of community living. However, Ian says the only problem is that there’s only one parachute…he’s quite the jokester and Roberta says he’s kept their 58 1/2 year marriage interesting. Roberta came to Risen son in December of 2013 after a fall and Ian moved in shortly after just this past March. After her brief stint in rehab, they were able to move in together, where Ian serves as a full time caregiver to his wife helping her do her physical therapy and tending to her medical needs. The two met in their last year of College at Simpson University in Seattle, WA where he studied Theology and she studied Christian Education. The couple moved to Council Bluffs in 1985, where Ian started the Chaplain program for the City department. Ian pastored for over 55 years with Roberta serving as his helpmate until he retired in 1997. After his retirement, he stayed on with the State Patrol doing grief counseling. The happily married couple has four children, or goats as Ian calls them, eight grandchildren, and six great grandchildren. To keep busy, Roberta crochets when she can and does her physical therapy and Ian tends to his sweetheart and they attend church meetings together. The couple says, “we love it here, it’s great; the staff, from a medical viewpoint are all very, very good and very congenial.”

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •

The Daily Nonpareil

Terry Lindsley

Sunday, April 27, 2014

‘I’ve just felt it’s necessary to give back to the community in some way. We’re around people who volunteered a lot and that helps. It’s just something that we enjoyed doing.’

Staff photo/Joe Shearer

Terry Lindsley volunteered with the American Red Cross in the 1980s and 1990s up until 2000. He and his wife, Barbara, became disaster instructors. Collectively, Lindsley served as a volunteer for more than 30 years.

Kirby Kaufman



erry Lindsley has been to disaster sites such as the 1999 Mississippi River flooding and United Airlines Flight 232, which crashed in Sioux City. The 71-year-old Council Bluffs man has been a volunteer for decades. He made it his life mission to give back to help others. “I’ve just felt it’s necessary to give back to the community in some way,” Lindsley said. “We’re around people who volunteered a lot and that helps. It’s just something that we enjoyed doing.” Lindsley volunteered with the American Red Cross in the 1980s and 1990s up until 2000. He and his wife, Barbara, became disaster instructors. Collectively, Lindsley served as a volunteer for more than 30 years. “We took the Red Cross training that they offered,” he said. When Lindsley visited Guam after the effects of Typhoon Rush in late December 1990, he observed several cultural differences. He stayed there for three weeks helping with disaster relief. He faced obstacles such as language barriers and having few resources. “You see how other people live. It wasn’t shocking, but a lot of the housing was very makeshift,” he said. “It was a lot of sheet metal structures and places they lived in that didn’t stand up at all to the typhoon.” Many homes had outdoor kitchens, and the weather never dropped below 70 degrees, Lindsley added. Sometimes he was accompanied by a local volunteer who could translate the native language. “You try and accompany what you’re saying in English with gestures,” he said. “Sometimes you get down to just trying to communicate that way.” Most of Lindsley’s volunteer work in Guam included replacing damaged beds and providing basic needs such as clothing. Lindsley said other people arrived to help residents rebuild their homes and provide other needs. Lindsley currently works for Pottawattamie County Emergency Management during the severe weather season. “If there’s an event that threatens the county, we’ll be down there heading up a small team that communicates with spotters and reports to the national weather service,” he said. For 17 years, he worked for the Job Training Partnership Agency, which assisted people with acquiring jobs in Iowa through Iowa Western Community College. Lindsley also is a Creighton Alegent Health Mercy Hospital Guild Volunteer. In the community, Lindsley is a founding member of the No One Dies Alone program in which volunteers spend time at Mercy Hospital talking and reading to severely and terminally ill patients. “A lot of times they’re not conscious, but sometimes they are,” he said. If the patients are conscious, volunteers will provide prayer service or even have conversations with them. The program was adopted at Mercy Hospital in 2009. Lindsley also worked with the Council Bluffs Radio Club and assisted with events as part of Ham Radio such as the Celebrate CB Parade. In his free time, he enjoys riding bikes. Lindsley has participated in the Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Race Across Iowa. While he and his wife no longer participate in the event, they still host riders who travel through the state.

life-long volunteer, still helping others Verla Beaty

lives in Risen Son’s Garden Homes, neighbor of the Steenbocks. She came to Risen son in May of 2012 from the west end of Council Bluffs after the floods. She is originally from Griswold and went to school in Macedonia. Growing up on a farm, she has always been fond of working outside planting flowers, gourds and squashes and gets to enjoy doing so at Risen Son in her own yard. She has lived in Council Bluffs for 27 years, but before that lived on an acreage in Bently, IA for nine years. She worked at Woodmen of the World as an Asset Supervisor in the Health and Disability department for 40 years. She says she likes to enjoy coffee on Tuesdays, shoot some pool with the guys, rides her bike, and she also makes a trip to the YMCA three days a week. She also volunteers her time at Mercy Hospital one day a week delivering mail. She stays very active and says she enjoys it at Risen Son.

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •


6F Sunday, April 27, 2014

The Daily Nonpareil

‘I see a need, and I feel for people that need help. We’re all responsible for doing things like that.’ Marilyn Linkletter

Marilyn Linkletter, 75, of Council Bluffs retired after 35 years of teaching middle school in Shenandoah and Red Oak.

Staff photo/Kirby Kaufman

Kirby Kaufman


arilyn Linkletter hates snow days. “When I was in school, I remember I didn’t like snow days because I didn’t like to stay home,” the 75-year-old Council Bluffs woman said. “I hated missing school.” Linkletter actually loved going to school, listening to her teachers and learning new things. That profound love of learning led her to become a middle school teacher in Red Oak and Shenandoah. Linkletter retired in 2000 after 35 years, but still serves as a substitute teacher a few days each week for the Lewis Central Community School District. She credited her passion to the strong teaching staff and positive environment at the former Neola Public School. Linkletter grew up in Neola and graduated from Council Bluffs High School. She graduated from Northwest Missouri State University. She originally applied for a second grade teaching position in Shenandoah, but the superintendent told her she looked more like a sixthgrade teacher. Linkletter said she was “a little reluctant” to take the sixth grade position, but later realized that grade was her “true love.” “I enjoyed that age group, their personalities and their quirky ways,” she said. She laughs about all the times she’s spent teaching those students. She laughs because there’s too many moments to tell. “I tend to relate to that age level the best,” Linkletter said. “I just seem to work better with that age level.” The Shenandoah Community School District recognized Linkletter’s work by awarding her the Teacher of the Year Award. At the time, Linkletter taught math and science at Shenandoah Middle School. Linkletter often went above and beyond to help students. She’d stay after school and talk with them and allowed them to assist her with work. Through many years of teaching, Linkletter said constant changes in technology made certain aspects of teaching easier. For example, the copy machine replaced the mimeograph to duplicate documents. “It was hard to make copies of worksheets,” she said. Projectors and other computer-integrated technology made it so teachers were less reliant on traditional instruments. “You don’t even have to use chalk to write on the boards anymore,” she said. “You have your computer and our project.” However, it was computers that changed everything, Linkletter added. “Now you can keep in contact with the parents with email,” she said. “It’s so easy. It used to be a little bit more difficult than that.” When she’s not teaching, Linkletter spends time volunteering at Community of Christ in Council Bluffs. Linkletter serves meals to families, children, the Altrusa Club and retired teachers in southwest Iowa. She even visits ill neighbors and helps them with chores and transportation. She also is part of the Holiday Cares Program, which involves sewing Christmas stockings for babies and provides baskets for the needy during the holidays. The church also supports a school in Haiti. Linkletter said her drive to help others and provide community service was instilled by her parents. “I see a need, and I feel for people that need help,” she said. “We’re all responsible for doing things like that.”

Linkletter always saw herself as a teacher

Margaret Butterbaugh

resides in Risen Son’s Long Term Care unit. She moved to Council Bluffs with her husband, Leonard, in 1948 from Shelby, IA. The two of them raised six children, who now take turns coming to see her every day. She has 16 grandchildren, 30 great grandchildren, and 19 great great grandchildren. Margaret worked for their family business, Butterbaugh Electric, as a bookkeeper and secretary. After they sold the business, she went to work for Cogley Clinic, now Physicians Clinic, where she was an insurance clerk. Upon retiring at the age of 62, Margaret served as a devoted, full-time volunteer to the Council Bluffs community for 25 years to organizations such as New Horizon Presbyterian Church, formerly known as Grace Presbyterian, Jennie Edmundson’s Auxiliary Volunteer program, and at Inter-Faith Response Inc. She now passes her time at Risen Son enjoying activities such as bingo, church service, and the music programs. She thinks they have a marvelous activity committee.

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •

The Daily Nonpareil

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Boyd Littrell

‘I’ve always been interested in community organization – how do communities organize themselves. There’s a whole sub-field in sociology on that. How do people become better able to participate in the larger environment – political, economical, sociological environment – they’re a part of?’ Mike Brownlee


hen Boyd Littrell retired in 2008 after 45 years as a sociologist and professor he wanted to stay involved in the interactions that make a community great. So when the Iowa West Foundation teamed with Children’s Square USA – of which he was a board member – and the Kanesville-Tinley Neighborhood Association on a project to improve the neighborhood, Littrell jumped at the chance to help. The 72-year-old serves as the evaluator on the neighborhood transformation initiative, which involves a series of projects to improve life in the area. He described the neighborhood as blighted and in need of a better sense of community. “I provide ongoing feedback to Iowa West, Children’s Square and the neighborhood, what’s working, what isn’t, how we can do better. I go to meetings, I walk the neighborhood, I talk to people in the neighborhood,” he said. “I provide an outsider’s look at the neighborhood. It’s become a real interest and commitment of mine.” He occasionally makes suggestions on how to improve the area. For instance, what he called a census of assets. “There are people who have good home shops, have tools, know how to use them. Some people have fine computer skills. How can we bring people together to help each other out?” he said. “I bump across them when I talk to people in neighborhood – I find out people have these skills, they want to help, but we’re working on getting that organized. The thing I’m after most importantly is in this coming year, an atlas of skills and tools people in community have, so that they can share.” In his role, Littrell also documents the actions of the project and the Kanesville-Tinley neighborhood, which is bound by Avenue G, Kanesville Boulevard and Sixth and Eighth streets, he said. “If you look at a town like Council Bluffs, there are many neighborhoods not unlike KanesvilleTinley. If housing stock and other things are going to improve, neighbors, landlords and others have to work together to turn this around,” he said. “In my view, the most important projects going on in Council Bluffs are initiatives like this.” To help broaden the work beyond KanesvilleTinley, Littrell is a member of the Council Bluffs Housing Trust Fund, which receives federal money to dispense toward projects to improve housing. “I was interested in them because the problems with Kanesville-Tinley are more pronounced, but other areas of Council Bluffs have lower-quality housing,” he said. “My interest is – how do we take the Kanesville-Tinley improvements and pass around the city?” And it all stems from his time as an academic. “I’ve always been interested in community organization – how do communities organize themselves. There’s a whole sub-field in sociology on that. How do people become better able to participate in the larger environment – political, economical, sociological environment – they’re a part of?” he said. Littrell’s been married to his wife, Kate Cutler, for 22 years, while Littrell has a son and Cutler has three children. They have seven grandchildren, “who are my real commitment in life,” he said. Littrell taught at the University of Texas in Austin before coming to the University of Nebraska at Omaha and also served as a visiting professor at the University of Iowa. He’s a member of the city’s Public Arts Commission as well. “I’ve been very involved with arts my whole life,” said the former baritone with the Omaha Symphonic Chorus who paints and has appeared in plays at the Chanticleer Theater. “Right now the commission is looking for smaller projects for public art in the city as we wait for larger projects. There are smaller ways we can make an impact on the look and feel of the town. “Range from artists to do park benches and bicycle racks, holding exhibits in unusual places. Any way to make the community a richer place to be.”


works to make neighborhoods better for all

Staff photo/John Schreier

Retired sociologist and professor Boyd Littrell works diligently to make improvements in several Council Bluffs neighborhoods.

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Elven and Jane Steenbock

live in Risen son’s Garden Homes, on the same street as the Burkums, Calvary Road. Here they enjoy the convenience of being close to their daughter, who lives in Treynor. Elven and Jane met in Neola, IA at the dance hall. They married in 1947 in Shelby, IA. The couple just recently moved in this past year from Persia, IA where Elven farmed corn and soybeans for 67 years. While Elven farmed, Jane tended to the house. They have three children, eight grandchildren, and 17 great grandchildren. Elven enjoys kicking back and watching baseball, the Kansas City Royals are his team! Jane likes to read and every Friday she enjoys getting her hair done at Risen Son’s beauty shop. They both agree that Risen Son is a good place to relax.

3000 Risen Son Boulevard • Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 (712) 366-9655 •


8F Sunday, April 27, 2014

Rosalie Shepherd

The Daily Nonpareil

‘Age is only a number. My doctor tells me I’m a lot younger with my health. I hated to tell my age before because people with age are discriminated against. I truly believe that.’



osalie Shepherd is a wellknown face throughout Council Bluffs. But those who don’t know this very active lady would find it very hard to believe she’s “definitely over 70,” as she puts it. Shepherd, who grew up in Avoca, doesn’t let age get the best of her. She’s currently the program manager and an education presenter for the Alzheimer’s Association of Southwest Iowa, located at 705 N. 16th St. in Council Bluffs. “Age is only a number. My doctor tells me I’m a lot younger with my health,” Shepherd said. “I hated to tell my age before because people with age are discriminated against. I truly believe that. Who knows, I might want to get another job someday.” As the program manager for the Alzheimer’s Association of Southwest Iowa, Shepherd works to spread the word about Alzheimer’s care throughout five counties – Pottawattamie, Shelby, Harrison, Fremont and Mills. “The Alzheimer’s Association has a lot of programs and I deliver Staff photo/Joe Shearer those programs out in the rural Rosalie Shepherd is the program manager for the Alzheimer’s Association of Southwest Iowa and works to spread the word about Alzheimer’s care throughout five counties – Pottawattamie, Shelby, Harrison, Fremont and Mills. areas, which are the most underserved,” she said. “We don’t get funding for every county so I have to make sure I get out to each county every month to make presentations, set up support groups and just generally deliver our programs.” As an education presenter for the association – a position she’s been in for the past 11 years – Shepherd strives to help family members with loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s. “After the diagnosis of a loved one, family members are overwhelmed. They call me and their first words are, ‘Help. I need help,’” she said. “We start them on their journey and, in doing so, we like to get them to our training session where we give the basics of the disease; how to handle behavior issues that come with it; how to communicate with their loved ones when they’ve lost their words; and we give them ideas on activities to keep them busy. Everything we do is for the care-giver.” Sherpherd’s background in teaching – she has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Nebraska at Omaha – started in 1971 when she began teaching at Omaha South High School. Even though she stopped teaching high school in 1978, she considers herself the “ultimate teacher” because “I think in everything we do, we’re teaching.” Shepherd joined up with the Alzheimer’s Association after her mother was diagnosed with and passed away from vascular dementia – a form of dementia caused by a series of small strokes. “She was having little strokes that were killing brain cells. She was losing her memory, and we knew nothing at the time,” she said. “This was 12 or 13 years ago and hardly anyone had heard of this disease and how to handle it. So it became my mission to tell people what I didn’t know back then.” Shepherd has been in the non-profit arena for more than 25 years, she said. In addition to working with the Alzheimer’s Association of Southwest Iowa, Shepherd established the Leukemia Society in Omaha, and is a member of the Cee Bee Ambassadors, PEO and Rotary Club. “When I was living in Omaha in 1989, I was one of first women invited to join the formerly all men club called Rotary,” she said. “So I’m proud of that.” When she’s not busy working, Shepherd says her favorite activity is playing with her six great grandchildren. That number will grow when two baby boys join the family this summer. Shepherd has two children and three grandchildren. Shepherd finds happiness in helping others and she doesn’t have plans any time soon to stop working and volunteering in the community. “In my own mind, I would like to work five more years. I know I have at least that in me. I’m healtheir than most people in their 50s,” she said. “(Working at the Alzheimer’s Association) is my mission and as long as I have people telling me I saved their life, I’ll continue. I always liked jobs where I’ve helped others. I’ve had high paying jobs in the past but they weren’t satisfying to me. I’m much happier when I’m helping others.” Shepherd noted that helping others also helps her feel young. “When you stay active and help others, you don’t think about your age. If I didn’t work, I would have to do something,” she said. “When my kids were growing up, I didn’t work outside the home and I volunteered for everything.” Those interested in volunteer work can email Shepherd for volunteer opportunities at “We’re all in this together, and it takes all of us to make it a better community,” she said.


finds happiness helping others

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Seven Over 70 - 2014  
Seven Over 70 - 2014