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Plans announced for Tracy hospice house

By Seth Schmidt


An architect’s drawing of the hospice house that has been proposed for construction in Tracy. The house would face a newly developed segment of Fifth St. East.

Plans have been unveiled for the construction of a new hospice house in Tracy.

The 6,100-square foot, four-bedroom house is to be built on the edge of town near the Sanford Tracy Medical Center and Prairie View Senior Living, northeast of the State and Fifth Street East intersection.

“We feel like this is an ideal location,” comments Nathan Schunke, administrator for Hospice of Murray County, the Slayton-based non-profit organization that is planning the new facility. 

Bonnie and Larry Buysse, Tracy, have agreed to donate a one-acre parcel of land for the house.

Tracy was chosen for the new hospice house, Schunke explains, because of the large number of hospice service requests that the organization gets from Tracy, Walnut Grove, and Westbroom areas. Last summer, Hospice of Murray County fielded multiple requests from area  families that couldn’t be accommodated because the Slayton hospice house was full.

In 2015,  the “Our House” hospice in Slayton had a 94% occupancy rate.

“We know that a need exists,”  Schunke says.

Having a second hospice house in Tracy, the administrator adds, will directly benefit Slayton area people, by freeing up rooms that might otherwise have been used serving Tracy area clients.

The planned Tracy hospice house has four patient rooms, each with its own half-bath and closet space.  A large living room has both a sitting area, and a corner for watching television.  A spacious kitchen offers family-style dining around a table, plus a snack counter.  All hospice meals are homemade.

Special features of the house make it easy for friends and family members to visit.

A guest bedroom is available for family members staying overnight. A family meeting room is equipped with all the comforts of home, including its own restroom. Outside patios offer views of the surrounding countryside.

Each resident has the privacy of his or her own room, the house is designed like a home, with common dining and living rooms that residents share. 

 “Basically, we want it to feel like home,” Schunke says.

For more on this article, see this week's Headlight-Herald.

Public invited to Memorial Day program

America’s war dead will be remembered at a Tracy Memorial Day program next week.

The Monday, 9 a.m. service, is scheduled at The Caboose.    Tracy American Legion Post 173 is sponsoring the program.  The public is urged to attend. Bernie Wing will give the Memorial Day address.

Three long-time Tracy American Legion Members will be honored:  Glenn Surprenant, 70 years;  Bill Carlson, 60 years;  Richard Bosacker, 50 years.

Local military service members who died over the past year will be remembered, including George Reese, Ralph Deslauriers, Paul Knoblauch, Wimpy Peterson, John Shoeman, Arnie Goettig, John Garrett, Eddie Hanson, and Dale Fischer.

The Memorial Day program will include a flag presentation by the American Legion color guard. Gold Star Mothers will be honored. 

The program will also include the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance by Commander Harley Wahl, a welcome by Mayor Steve Ferrazzano, an invocation and benediction by Legion chaplain Dave Ziemke,  and musical selections by a Tracy Area High School brass choir.

A wreath will be laid in memory of fallen comrades. A Legion honor guard will present a firing squad salute outside the Caboose after the indoor program.  Coffee and cookies will be served following the program.


Community planning gathering set

All interested people are invited to a planning retreat next week to set future community goals and priorities, and discuss the results of a recent survey of local businesses.

The gathering is planned Wednesday, June 1, from 8 a.m. to noon in the Tracy City Council room.

Tara Onken, EDA director, says that all interest people, including business owners and community leaders are invited.  Coffee and snacks will be served.

Those who can’t attend for the entire morning are invited to “come for as long as you can,” Onken explains.

The gathering will begin with a discussion of the EDA’s recently completed “Business Retention and Expansion Survey.” A Power Point presentation will include demographic data about Tracy.

The group will then discuss short and long-term goals, as well as setting priorities for accomplishing goals.