Slideshow of Officer Thomas Decker Funeral

Funeral of Officer Thomas Decker

St. Joseph Police Officer Joel Klein directs traffic during the funeral procession Dec. 5 for slain Cold Spring-Richmond Police Officer Thomas Decker, who was killed in the line of duty Nov. 29. More than 2,300 vehicles from agencies throughout Minnesota and even from neighboring states participated in the procession to show solidarity and support. The vehicles traveled side-by-side in the procession, which lasted 30 minutes.

Cold Spring officer’s murder stuns area

Memorialized as a “brother, uncle and friend to many,” Cold Spring-Richmond police officer Thomas Decker was buried with full police honors Wednesday after a funeral at St. John’s Abbey, Collegeville.

Decker, 31, is the father of four children: Kelly, 8; Jade, 7; Justin, 6; and Devon, 5.

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Area choirs, including the Great River Chorale, Cantabile Girls’ Choir and Youth Chorale of Central Minnesota, will perform “A Child’s Christmas” concert Dec. 15 and 16 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church. Performers include several Sartell and St. Joseph residents.

Local members of chorale will perform ‘A Child’s Christmas’ concert

“A Child’s Christmas,” a holiday concert recalling the innocence and wonder of Christmas as seen through a child’s eyes and ears, will be performed Dec. 15 and 16 by the Great River Chorale and its musical guests at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in St. Cloud.

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Caregivers gather Nov. 29 at the St. Joseph Community Fire Hall to share their experiences caring for loved ones. St. Joseph residents Sheila Dodge, Lori Pfannenstein and Dianne and Vince DeVargas served as panelists during the event.

Caregivers share journeys during local event

There is no universal recipe to be a good caregiver. Everyone has his or her own flavor and style. Whether caring for a spouse, parent or friend, one of the main ingredients is remembering each is not alone.

About 15 caregivers gathered Nov. 29 at the St. Joseph Community Fire Hall to learn about area resources and networking as they shared their journeys. There were tears, there was laughter and there was unity among the group. Some had taken care of loved ones for years, some had lost loved and others were there to learn what’s needed to be a caregiver.

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In their new quarters, members of the Sartell Senior Connection Board hold their Dec. 3 meeting. From left tor right are Jan Sorell, chair of the board; Myron Umerski, JoAnn Olson, treasurer, and Judy Morgan. Sitting at the left of the table, out of view, are Gerri Boser, Lint Edgerly, Mike Gilbert, Ron Hurd, Pat McNeal, Al Meier and Jim Wasdyke. Non-voting citizen members of the board are Sandra Cordie, Sartell City Council member; Ann Doyscher-Domres, coordinator of the Sartell-St. Stephen Community Education program; Therese Haffner, a member of the Sartell City Staff and secretary for the Sartell Senior Connection Board; and Gail Rucks, activities coordinator for Country Manor Apartments.

Senior Connection moves into new ‘home’

The Sartell Senior Connection will soon be able to celebrate its fifth birthday party in its new “home.”

Last week, that new “home” opened officially in the east wing of the Sartell-St. Stephen School District Office Building. On Dec. 3, the Sartell Senior Connection Board held its first meeting in the room, which used to be the school library many years ago.

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Regan Dockery of Sartell plays the role of Junie B. Jones in a play that opens Dec. 7 on the St. John's University campus.

Dockery to star as Junie B. Jones

It’s quite a feat for a 10th-grader to act the role of a first-grader in a play and have the audience captivated and in stitches by the antics of the little school girl.

But that’s what Regan Dockery of Sartell does. The Sartell High School student is utterly convincing as Junie B. Jones, the lead character in “Junie B. Jones in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells.” What’s just as remarkable is that Dockery, when she was a wee girl, loved the Junie B. Jones series of books. Her mother used to read the books frequently to Regan and her sisters.

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Wacosa recycles holiday lights

Don’t throw those old holiday light sets in the garbage. Recycle them instead. WACOSA, in collaboration with the Recycling Association of Minnesota, is collecting unwanted light strings, electrical, telephone and appliance cords this holiday season. WACOSA workers will remove the bulbs from the holiday light strings and then all bulbs and donated cords will be recycled. Several area businesses have collection boxes for these items that can be brought in during their regular business hours. These locations include the following: Ace Hardware in Little Falls, Brenny Transportation in St. Joseph, Denny and Kathy’s Ace Hardware in St. Cloud, Mimbach Fleet Supply in Sauk Rapids, MinnWest Bank in St. Cloud, Sentry Bank in St. Cloud and St. Joseph. Tri-County Solid Waste in Waite Park, WACOSA’s DocuShred Storefront in Waite Park and Whitney Senior Center, St. Cloud. WACOSA is a non-profit organization that serves more than 550 adults with disabilities in Central Minnesota. Operating since 1963, WACOSA has program sites in Waite Park, Sauk Centre and at Whitney Senior Center. Most of our workers face barriers to employment and WACOSA is here to help knock down those barriers. We help them find paid work to match their abilities. For more information about the holiday light recycling program or if you would like collection bins for your business location, please call Beth at WACOSA 320-257-5182.

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