Family’s appreciates community’s help
To all who assisted in the search and rescue of Kitty Wenckus:
On Thursday afternoon, Sept. 6, Kitty Wenckus wandered into her property and was missing for 19 hours. By early Friday morning, I was facing the possibility of writing her obituary. Shortly after 10 a.m. she was miraculously found by one of the search parties.
Authorities had been notified shortly after 3 p.m. Thursday and by 3:30, Deputy Pat Gorchals, incident commander from the Waupaca County Sheriffs Department, was already on scene, mobilizing an influx of public safety personnel from throughout the county and beyond.
It was excellence in action; where expertise and compassion merge. The responders first arrived from Waupaca; then Weyauwega, Iola and Amherst. When all was said and done, 28 municipalities and organizations, as well as citizen volunteers, had united in the search. Every possible resource was employed – helicopters, drones, watercraft, dive teams, canine and equine units, as well as crews with thermal imaging equipment.
The teams worked tirelessly for those 19 hours in an exemplary display of coordination and cooperation. The entire mobilization and execution was something to behold. I cannot recall a greater display of dedication, perseverance and competence.
At some point in the dead of night, I was thanking a few of the officers for their efforts. Their modest response was “This is what we do.” What they did was extraordinary. I had no concept of the depth, breadth and scope of their skills, passion and compassion.
There were also countless friends, neighbors and strangers who assisted in the foot search, canvassed neighborhoods and drove up and down the streets, roads and highways of the area, posted on Facebook and kept Kitty in their thoughts and prayers. Our family is fortunate to live in such a caring community.
It is amazing to me that all of the combined resources and tireless efforts were devoted to the safe return of one, little, 92 year old lady, who happens to be our mom. On Friday, I was thinking about the possibility of having to make funeral arrangements. On Sunday, we celebrated mom’s 93rd birthday.
Never give up hope.
With the greatest respect, appreciation and gratitude to all who helped our family,
Phil Wenckus, on behalf of Allan, Susan and, especially, Kitty Wenckus