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Special Edition / SUMMER 2012

BEACON A

P U B L I C A T I O N

His Vision Becomes His Legacy On Saturday, March 17, 2012,

the Chairman of the Ohio Masonic Home Board of Trustees, Michael T. Puskarich, passed away as a result of a sudden illness at the age of 51.

Michael was extremely committed to the building of Memory Care Centers at the Browning Masonic Community in Waterville, Ohio, and at the Western Reserve Masonic Community in Medina, Ohio. He was passionately working to make a difference by providing a comfortable building and important programs for victims of Alzheimer’s and other memory loss diseases and their families.

VOLUME 19, ISSUE 3

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Active fundraising was just get a group together and lay out underway when Michael passed your own route. The day will away. Since March 2012, thousands culminate when all vehicles arrive of individuals and groups have at Western Reserve Masonic given generously Community in to the building Medina, Ohio for a projects. Because celebration ceremony of these gifts, we to close the event. The are ever so close rally is open to the to raising the 7.1 general public and million dollars we encourage you to – Michael T. Puskarich that will make his get those outside the dream a reality. Masonic Fraternity As a leader of our organization, involved. The goal is to reach out Michael was famous for one to as many people as possible and of his lines, “If I hand you the ball, ask them to support your effort are you going to run with it?” with a donation of any amount. We have decided to run with it, When so many people have been and on Saturday, August 25, 2012, affected by memory loss diseases, the ball is being put in your hands it’s easy to find others who want to also. The sound of cars, trucks, support your effort with a donation. vans, SUVs and motorcycles will Your job is to ask. The number one be heard starting their engines and reason that people will donate to taking off, from cities all over Ohio, the “Miracle Miles for Memory Care for a truely memorable event. So fill Road Rally” is because someone up your tanks, grab your coolers, asked them to! All proceeds will load up your family and call your benefit the Memory Care Centers’ friends to be a part of the Michael Capital Campaign. T. Puskarich Legacy Miracle Miles for Memory Care Road Rally. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to be a part of this statewide memorable event…are you going to run with it? The Miracle Miles for Memory Care Road Rally is a statewide effort to raise funds to complete the dream for which Michael had such a passion. There will be numerous routes from which to choose, with different starting locations. One is sure to be close to you! You are also welcome to

“If I hand you the ball, are you going to run with it?”


Take the Ball... A

fter attending Grand Lodge Session in October and hearing a presentation, given on the Memory Care Centers Capital Campaign of the Ohio Masonic Home (OMH), I quite often found myself talking about and promoting this venture. The words of MWB Terry Posey that follow are words that have remained steadfast in my mind. “I believe Masons are the finest men I know. When called by their church, their country or their fellow man, they respond. They built this country and they protected their fellow men.” Just a short six months later I attended the Cornerstone Laying Ceremony at Browning Masonic Community and the Ground Breaking/Cornerstone Ceremony at Western Reserve Masonic Community. The words written above came again to the forefront of my mind. The Masonic Community in the state of Ohio had answered the call and the Capital Campaign was well underway. While attending the ceremonies I had the opportunity to meet Cathy Wigton, OMH Corporate Director of Fund Development. We shared our excitement about the Memory Care Centers with each other, and I had the chance to share my wife’s and my passion for the care of those with dementia related diseases. We had suffered the loss of my mother-in-law to Parkinson’s and dementia in 2010. I offered to Cathy that day that if there was any other way I could be of help to just give me a call. About six weeks later I

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received that call from her asking me if I had a few minutes to meet and discuss an idea. We met May 29, and before we parted the vision of the Miracle Miles for Memory Care Road Rally was well under way. We were awaiting approval from his family to name it in honor of Michael T. Puskarich. I was honored when offered to Chair this event and again the words of MWB Posey were running through my mind. Brethren, I am encouraging you, get involved and be a part of this statewide event to help raise the needed funds to complete the Memory Care Centers Capital Campaign. This will be a memorable day in the lives of those residents, families and friends who are affected by this tragic disease. Be a part of this very special day in Masonic history, as we build a brighter future for our loved ones. Your support and donations will be appreciated more than you can ever imagine and will not go unnoticed. • Alzheimer’s is a progressive, irreversible and ultimately fatal disease which is the most common type of dementia and accounts for 60% to 80% of its cases. • It is the sixth leading cause of death across all ages in the United States, and the fifth leading cause of death in those age 65 and older. • In the United States alone, Alzheimer’s strikes someone every 69 seconds and affects more than 5.4 million people. • In Ohio the number of cases is at 230,000 and is projected to grow to 250,000 by 2025.

“ I believe Masons are the finest men I know. When called by their church, their country or their fellow man, they respond. They built this country and they protected their fellow men.” – MWB Terry Posey

To be a part of this memorable event log on to www. memorycaremiles.com and get started on this fantastic journey. Details of the rally and events of the day can be found on the website. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at shirkd@ ohiofreemason.com or by phone at 937-631-0507. I look forward to seeing you in August. Fraternally, Dan Shirk Statewide Committee Chairman “Michael T. Puskarich Legacy Miracle Miles for Memory Care Road Rally”

Dan on his motorcycle.


and Run With It! By Dan Shirk

I will be asking and coordinating with every Masonic District in the state to choose a starting point and a route which best suits your district. Although we would love to have everyone ride the complete route, we realize that time and distance may preclude that from being possible for some. We are putting a special emphasis on the stretch from Browning to Western Reserve, but again if you can’t participate in that ride, we encourage you to join us at Western Reserve in Medina for the closing celebration ceremonies. The schedule of events that follows is for anyone who wishes to participate but it is not required. EVENT SCHEDULE

Sign up and Run with the Ball! Starting Options:

Drivers have a variety of kick-off sites across the state to start and hit the road heading to Browning Masonic Community.

Springfield, Ohio • 8:00 a.m. Kick-Off Ceremony at the Ohio Masonic Home. Enjoy a Continental breakfast • Welcoming comments, route schedule and vehicle blessing • Then on the road to Browning to join the festivities

Across the state • District start times will vary depending on location & time needed to get to Browning • Start site locations/times will be posted on the website • Enjoy festivities at Browning then head to Western Reserve

Start your engines • Plan your own start time/place as a group or as an individual • Get in the Road Rally groove, plan a breakfast kick-off for you, your buddies and sponsors • Three cheers and then on the road to Browning

Arrival at Browning 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (approx.) – All routes converge at BMC for a large Football Kick-Off Tailgate party. Enjoy food, music, entertainment and mingle with folks from across the state. Brief program at the building site. Drivers heading to WRMC will be given a route schedule, Road Rally T-Shirt and magnet.

Line ‘em up... 2:30 p.m. – Send off to WRMC. We are hoping for a big group to send off. The vision is hundreds of

By now we’re sure you’re asking — how do I get involved? Sign Up at: www.memorycaremiles.com

Sign up to drive in the Road Rally and customize your personal fundraising Web page. We have techies who will help you! Upload a photo. Tell your story about why you are driving or for whom you are driving. It is quick, easy and offers that personal touch for your friends, family and sponsors who visit your site to make their

vehicles traveling across the state to support this wonderful cause. This is the main focus of the Rally. State and local authorities will provide traffic control.

Arrive at Western Reserve (130 miles from Browning) 4:30 p.m. (approx.) – Closing ceremonies, awards, prizes, and concluding remarks. Rock Out with our 50’s theme festivities, music, food and fun. Showcase your classic car or motorcycle for all to admire in our car show area. Check out the Memory Care building site.

donation sponsoring your ride. We will be encouraging all Districts to register their District as a group, that way their membership who may not be able to participate in the ride can support it through a donation to their District’s goal. Create and sign up as a Team with buddies and ask for folks to sponsor your Team’s ride.

Sign Up by Phone:

If you are not an internet user, don’t despair! Call us at 888-248-2664. We will give you all the tools to be a driver without the need to use a computer.

SUMMER 2012

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Call for the Cause J

ournalist David Frost once wrote, “Love is when each person is more concerned for the other than for one’s self.” I couldn’t help but think of this quote as I began to reflect on the words I was about to write in this article. As a Mason, and as an officer of the Ohio Masonic Home, I ask myself, “Isn’t this what we’re all about and what we’re all called to do? Aren’t we supposed to be modeling our lives and conducting our business with this sense of selflessness?” When we find ourselves so worried about the what’s and how’s of life

it’s easy to allow our vision and our priorities to become clouded. I’m very proud to say that your Ohio Masonic Home, the boards of trustees and your Grand Lodge have not allowed our priorities and our vision to be clouded. It’s through this sense of urgency and clarity of vision that has invoked a call to action, a Call for the Cause. Our “Call” was to end the relocation of residents from Browning Masonic Community

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(BMC) and Western Reserve Masonic Community (WRMC) because we couldn’t provide secure environments for those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. We were asking residents to leave when they were most vulnerable and truly needed us. As an organization there was a need to address “headon” the rapidly growing incidence of dementia and Alzheimer’s throughout Ohio; to partner with those individuals, and their families, who are experiencing this living nightmare. Two years ago the commitment was made to build two new memory care buildings located at Browning Masonic Community (Waterville) and Western Reserve Masonic Community (Medina). Today we are sitting at the precipice of turning our vision into a reality. As I write this article, construction equipment is rolling onto the grounds at BMC and they are readying the site to begin building. Western Reserve’s construction is not far behind and it won’t be long before we see holes dug, footers being poured and our new buildings coming out of the ground at both locations. Our statewide campaign has been, and continues to be, very successful...raising 80% of our goal. None of this would have been possible if it weren’t for you! Construction on these new buildings is about to begin because of your generosity. Most importantly, however, our residents and their families are feeling more secure today knowing that they won’t have to be relocated if diagnosed with dementia or

“Love is when each person is more concerned for the other than for one’s self”. – David Frost

Alzheimer’s. I shared the story of Nate Wanek and his wife Evelyn at Grand Lodge back in October. Nate survived the landing on Omaha Beach only to succumb to Alzheimer’s. I had to tell Mrs. Wanek, his wife and best friend for over 60 years, as well as his daughter that we needed to relocate Nate because we were no longer able to meet his needs. Your generosity has allowed us to re-write the ending to this story. No more will we have to relocate our residents who suffer from these terrible diseases and your kindness has made this possible. Thank you for your commitment and support to build new memory care centers at Browning Masonic Community and Western Reserve Masonic Community. Together we are able to be living examples of the words of David Frost, “Love is when each person is more concerned for the other than for one’s self.” With a sincere heart, I thank you! Fraternally, Jay Dettorre Chief Operating Officer The Ohio Masonic Home


Moving the Dirt Construction equipment has rolled onto the building site at Browning Masonic Community.

“Driven by a vision of resident choice and independence, Pathways at Browning Masonic Community offers a multidisciplinary approach to dementia care. Pathways will not only provide a secure, purposeful and respectful environment but also serve as a community resource for support, education and research, thereby raising the bar for quality dementia care in northwest Ohio.” David Subleski, President Browning Masonic Community

“The memory care center at Western Reserve Masonic Community will fill a need in our community of care. It will enable us to serve those who need a secure environment. We anxiously await the time when we can welcome residents to this new part of our community.” Sarah Koch, President Western Reserve Masonic Community

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The Goal is Within Reach 7.1 Million (Goal)

Memory Care Centers’ Capital Campaign — June, 2012 Please help us reach our goal...make your gift today!

5.68 Million (80% of Goal) 4 Million 3 Million 2 Million 1 Million

To my beloved Brethren, I am writing to you today with a humble and proud heart to thank each of you who have made our Capital Campaign for the Memory Care Centers at Browning and Western Reserve Masonic Communities successful so far. We are 80% to our overall goal and we are well on our way to being able to build our buildings debt free. This will allow us to provide state of the art programming in a state of the art building for our Brethren, their wives and families at the lowest cost possible in the state. Our matching gift time frame of the campaign netted an additional 2.1 million dollars in two months. This is a reflection of your kind and giving hearts and truly is one of the most rapid and successful sixty day periods I have ever been a part of in raising dollars. For this fact I want to thank you and tell you all how

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proud I am to be a part of such a benevolent fraternity. We all should be proud of this demonstration of a Mason’s commitment to help our brethren and our community. I am also writing to those of you who need an explanation of the overall campaign and what has occurred to date. The campaign began in January 2010 with many organizational meetings and planning meetings. From January 2010 to January 2011 we raised 1 million dollars toward the campaign. The campaign was moving slowly and did not have energy and that was very concerning to me as the CEO. We badly needed a boost to the campaign and we needed a spark to gain momentum. At the Ohio Masonic Home Board meeting in February I requested monies be designated from the MESC fund, which is under the OMH corporation and not the Foundation. The MESC

fund was established from the sale of beds from the Masonic Eastern Star Home in Cincinnati. For years this fund was designated and suggested, in the minutes from our past board meetings, by our past board chair and before I arrived, to be used for building projects for the dementia units at Western Reserve and Browning. The board approved the utilization of this fund for the project at a million dollars for each campus. They additionally required that the funds be strictly anonymous. There was a suggestion that we call the funds a temporary loan just to note that if at some time we can pay the funds back that would be desirable. There was no determined payback date nor interest or anything that would truly be designated as a real loan by definition. With this approval of the funds we determined that we should employ a matching funds strategy, that was needed in a big way, to


Commemorative Gifts create that spark and boost. With the restrictions and designation and direction of the Board of Trustees about the funds being anonymous we rolled out the matching funds strategy. During this two month time-frame of matching money I had five people ask me questions about the funds and if they were from an individual or corporation and I responded to each of them that it was corporation dollars and that was all I could say. Some people asked if the money came from the Foundation and I could honestly tell them that it did not because it was true. The funds were OMH funds and not from the Benevolent Endowment Fund. We as a staff were astounded at the response we received from this decision, and to double our money in 60 days was something of which we all should be proud. I realize that for some this is disappointing because they made the assumption that these funds were from an individual brother and not from the MESC fund. I need to express my heartfelt regret if this offended anyone but there was absolutely no intent to deceive the membership or create any false pretense. To those who are offended, I want to suggest that you ask yourself this: Did you give money ONLY because you perceived a brother had given the donation or did you give money to leave the legacy of a building that will take care of our brethren for years to come? I want to disclose with no false pride but as a fact that I personally have donated to this campaign $35,000.00 of my own money because I believe so strongly in

Commemorative Gifts Browning Masonic Community ~ Pathways at Browning: The Commitment Courtyard Family Dining Conference Room North and South Connecting Corridors Entry Atrium Respite Overnight Room Beauty Salon Private Resident Room Private Resident Room Reflection Room

In memory of Milton Bennett, given by Marilyn Bennett Palestine Chapter #51 O.E.S. In memory of Michael T. Puskarich given by Tom Stofac The Carl and Edyth Lindner Charitable Trust The Circle of Care-Browning Masonic Community Staff Rubicon Lodge #237 F. & A.M. Bob and Betty Rettig David and Susan Bennett Barton Smith Lodge #613 F. & A.M. Sam Hornish Jr. Foundation

Western Reserve Masonic Community ~ Connecting Realities Memory Care Center Main Entrance Way (Atrium) West Wing East Wing Courtyard Second Courtyard North Connecting Corridor South Connecting Corridor Family Dining Conference Room Respite Day Room Nurses/Welcome Station Beauty Salon Respite Overnight Room

Willard A. Stephenson In memory of Mary K. Parker In memory of Robert J. Parker Agatha Wallace In memory of Arthur & Doris Bodley, given by Sherry Murphy In memory of Arthur & Doris Bodley, given by Sherry Murphy In memory of Robert J. and Mary K. Parker Forest City Commandery #40, KT In memory of Nathalie Holliday and Steve Nagy, given by Michael T. and Judy Puskarich Gary B. Williams, M.D. In memory of Glenn J. Bollinger, given by Marie Bollinger and Family In honor of Marlene Logston, given by Tommy Logston Audrey Auman

the benefit of these projects and the fraternity as a whole. This is what I do as a Mason and a man of faith. I share this with you only to give you some indication of my personal commitment to this fraternity and these projects. Again to all of you that have given funds to this project be assured that we will use your dollars in the most efficient and effective manner as we move

forward in constructing these buildings and providing a legacy of care, compassion and concern. Fraternally, Tom Stofac Chief Executive Officer The Ohio Masonic Home

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BEACON 2655 W. National Road Springfield, Ohio 45504-3698 www.ohiomasonichome.org

Beacon Special Edition Editor: Kristen Hirschfeld Communications Manager 937-525-3025 khirschfeld@ohiomasonichome.org

A Moment of Reflection Most Recent Commemorative Naming Gift

Sam Hornish, Jr. is a native of Defiance, Ohio, which is 37 miles southwest of Browning Masonic Community. Hornish drove in open-wheel racing for seven In early June the Sam Hornish years winning three Indy Car Jr. Foundation made a generous championships including the gift to name the reflection room of Indianapolis 500 in 2006. He then Pathways at Browning Masonic moved to NASCAR in 2007 where Community. The Hornish family’s he still competes. Although he may foundation made the gift to establish be racing around the United States, a place within the Pathways Memory his generous heart remains close Care Center where individuals or to home. families can gather in a peaceful, serene setting to rest and restore. Photo courtesy of SingleLens.net

Commemorative Naming Opportunities ...are still available for both Memory Care Centers. If you are interested in naming rights please contact the Fund Developer representing the location of your choice. Cathy Wigton Corporate Director, Fund Development The Ohio Masonic Home cwigton@ohiomasonichome.org 937-525-3002

Cathy Toth NE Ohio Regional Fund Developer Western Reserve Masonic Community ctoth@ohiomasonichome.org 330-721-3261

Please scan to learn more about the Road Rally.

Mark Harris NW Ohio Regional Fund Developer Browning Masonic Community maharris@ohiomasonichome.org 419-878-1814

July 2012  
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