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Forreston Journal / • Friday, February 1, 2019




Woman donates quilt to Serenity Home Donation is made in memory of late husband

Mueller. “I knew the perfect person to make the quilt in honor of Don,” said Jane. “Don worked with Nina’s husband for 25 years.  We were all

very good friends.”   Nina was honored to make the quilt, which was a work of love. She made the quilt in the rail fence pattern in beautiful masculine colors. 

Recently the two women visited Serenity Home and presented the new quilt in honor of Don and all the others who will find peace and comfort in the bariatric bed.

BY ANGIE THIESEN Serenity Hospice & Home Quilts are a symbol of peace and comfort at Serenity Hospice & Home, Oregon. Serenity had the privilege in 2016 of serving the family of Don Bruce, a 40- year resident of Polo.  He came into Serenity Home to spend his final days.  If you knew Don, you knew he was kind and generous and a hard worker. He died young at the age of 69.  He was also tall. Very tall.  After his death, his wife Jane expressed an interest in helping Serenity obtain a bariatric bed for larger patients.  Her generosity along with a grant from Woodward Governor, Rockford, allowed Serenity to turn one of their patient rooms into a bariatric room. If you have ever visited  Serenity, you know that quilts are symbolic of the comfort and peace found within our hospice home. Serenity’s collection of quilts are made with love by various artists and they serve to remind us of all the people and families we have served.  Jane noticed that a larger bed would require a larger quilt. This is when she approached her friend of more than 25 years, Nina

Jane Bruce (right) the wife of Serenity Home patient Don Bruce and Nina Mueller, Bruce’s friend of 25 years, stand beside the new quilt donated to Serenity Home. The quilt was made by Mueller and presented in honor of Don Bruce. Photo supplied


County won’t be forced to change workforce group BY VINDE WELLS Ogle County won’t be forced after all by state officials to join a Local Workforce Innovation Area it had already rejected. County board chairman Kim Gouker, of Byron, told the board Jan. 15 that before leaving office earlier this month, Gov. Bruce Rauner granted the county’s request to stay in the LWIA that includes JoDaviess, Carroll, Whiteside, Lee, Bureau, LaSalle, and Putnam Counties, instead of being forced to join one with Winnebago, Stephenson,

and Boone Counties. “It means we get to stay with the counties we’re aligned with. It means less disruption,” he said. Gouker was contacted last May by Illinois Workforce Innovation Board officials who informed him that the county was out of compliance because the LWIA of which it is a member does not match its Economic Development District. Gouker voiced concern last summer that the change could adversely affect local job seekers. The purpose of the LWIA is to retrain displaced workers and provide other services for individuals,

including youths, looking for work. LWIAs are part of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which is under the authority of the U.S. Department of Labor, which provides the funding through grants. The state governor has the responsibility to designate and re-designate LWIAs that administer public workforce programs. Ogle was one of five Illinois counties determined by Department of Labor officials to be out of compliance.  In 2010, Gouker said Ogle County rejected the LWIA that included

Winnebago, Stephenson, and Boone Counties. and instead chose to join the current one. The law was revised in the last couple of years, he said, to require LWIAs to match the Economic Development Districts. “The crux of it was we didn’t want to get thrown in with these [Winnebago, Stephenson, and Boone] counties because they aren’t the same as we are,” Gouker said. “They all have large metropolitan areas and we don’t. We chose not to join with them.”


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