Year in Review: Quotations of the YearPublished 11:00am Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Editor’s note: The news staff has selected its favorite quotations from the past year and present them here for you to recall.
“It’s just so sad that a 100-year-old manufacturing company here in Albert Lea closed. There was no issue with product quality.” — Steve Overgaard, owner of Albert Lea-based Vasco Inc., in an Oct. 24 story about his purchase of the assets of tool manufacturer Enderes Tool.
“If you got a pool in your backyard, you don’t care if the public pool is closed. We do.” — U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, describing cuts to services the middle class uses. He spoke Nov. 2 in Albert Lea at the Union Center as part of a DFL Party campaign rally.
“It was a good bus ride home.” — Albert Lea Tigers football coach Max Jeffrey, describing the team’s trip back from Mankato after beating East High School 46-28 on Oct. 5.
“Justice is not an option in Minnesota. It is an obligation. It is a first principle.” — Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie Gildea speaking to the Albert Lea Noon Kiwanis Club on Constitution Day, Sept. 17. She said funding the courts ought to be a high priority for the state Legislature.
“I had been out there several times calling for her, but the cornfields are so thick.” — Waseca resident Mandi Kauffman, who was in a car crash in September on state Highway 13 north of New Richland and lost her Chihuahua shortly after the collision. A farm family found the dog six days later.
“With everything the town has going now, this type of bar is needed at this location.” — Greg Undahl, one of the owners of 112 Broadway, a bar and restaurant that opened in downtown Albert Lea on Aug. 31.
“Farm programs are on the table with everything else. I will be the first to say something.” — Republican congressional candidate Allen Quist July 19 speaking about cutting farm subsidies at a gathering at the Albert Lea Senior Center in Skyline Plaza. Quist owns an 800-acre farm that his son manages.
“On the driver’s side of the trailer, Diesel alerted by sniffing intensely and sniffed to the bottom rear side of the trailer, and then he sniffed intensely at the left rear trailer door and began to scratch as an indication to drug odor.” — Steele County District Court papers, describing how a Minnesota State Patrol dog discovered 235 pounds of marijuana on Interstate 35 near the Ellendale exit on July 5.
“It was one of those deals that was pure dumb luck, where I was in the right place at the right time.” — Steve Bakken, an ink clerk at Minnesota Corrugated Box, was shown twice on national television Aug. 13 on “Late Night with David Letterman.” Letterman himself said at the show’s opening: “I’m David Letterman, and I’m coming to you from Blue Earth, Minnesota.”
“This feels fantastic. It’s going to be a tremendous boost to the entire district.” — United South Central Superintendent Jerry Jensen described how he felt after an election Aug. 14 decided the district can build a new school facility.
“How can this wonderful, boisterous friend, who, just moments ago, was laughing and joking with me not be able to talk? What was wrong?” — Albert Lea mailman Scott Pirsig in July, retelling how on March 31 he rescued his friend, Albert Lea lawyer Bob Sturtz, from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Sturtz had suffered a stroke hundreds of miles from the nearest medical facility equipped to help him.
“To have him argue that it was OK was disingenuous. He knew what he was doing.” — Assistant Waseca County Attorney Brenda Miller in a June 28 story, defending the controversial felony theft charges she brought forth against former Albert Lea City Manager Jim Norman, who abused the city-issued credit card during his short stint in 2010.
“It was like TNT. My ears were ringing, and I couldn’t hardly hear.” — Pat Yotter, describing on June 12 what it sounded like when the house north of Freeborn owned by her and her husband, Ralph, exploded as a result of sewage gas. He was flown to a St. Paul hospital with severe burns. She talked about flying through the air and added: “I wasn’t no Mary Poppins. I didn’t have no umbrella to bring me down.”
“Your heart as a mom feels like it’s going to come out of your chest. You see her warm up and the tears start coming already — it’s all nerves.” — Sue Horejsi watching her daughter, Albert Lea High School freshman Lindsey Horejsi, swim at the state swimming and diving meet finals Nov. 17. Lindsey set the Minnesota All-time record in the 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1 minute, 0.16 seconds. She was awarded the title of state champion.
“When I woke up Saturday morning, I texted her and said, it wasn’t a dream, you are state champion.” — New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva track and field coach Duey Ferber said about Panthers’ Carlie Wagner becoming state champion at the state track and field tournament in June. Wagner became the high jump state champion with a height of 5 feet 6 inches.
“The thing that gives me validation now is the fact that I teach. I’ve learned validation doesn’t come from somebody telling you you’re good. It’s the result of what you do. It’s not from some dude sitting behind a table.” — Dustin Boyer, a hip-hop dance choreographer and youth director, said about his experience trying out for “So You Think You Can Dance.” The judge who sent him home never looked up from his notepad while Boyer was performing.
“Whenever I hear the national anthem, I have my hand on my heart and I look straight into the flag and I see my hero, Chief Warrant Officer Corey Goodnature, flying a Chinook helicopter on a mission going into battle to save one of his fellow comrades.” — Larry Goodnature said at the seventh annual Corey Goodnature Memorial Scholarship Golf Classic June 30 at Green Lea Golf Course. Corey was Goodnature’s nephew.
“Nobody out there is Superman. If you pull the trigger, you can’t stop that bullet.” — Charlie Schmidt, a local firearms safety instructor, said in April. Schmidt along with Durlin Hensch and Bob Stillings have been teaching a firearms safety class for the last 30 years.
“His personality would be impossible to sum up in a story. All who knew him would agree, his personality was larger than life.” — Jason Gordon said of his dad, Thomas Gordon, who suddenly passed away in December 2011. Gordon was interviewed in January about his dad’s life.
“I was coming off the ice, I was all sweaty and my dad pulled me over to him and said, ‘Kelley, pull your hockey pants down a little bit, you’ve got them too high and you look like a sissy out there.’” — Kelley Brandt, an Albert Lea native who was inducted into the Iowa State University Hockey Hall of Fame in October 2011. When giving a speech at the induction ceremony, Brandt told of his earlier years of hockey when his dad was still alive. The story about Brandt was published Jan. 1.
“It’s been one long year. We’ve been trying to keep Dan part of the family, and now we get to be a whole family again.” — Gail Springborg talks about her husband, Dan, on May 4 as he returned from a year-long deployment with Albert Lea’s Delta Company of the Minnesota National Guard.
“I get sick of running through the rumor mill when I try to do the best job I can. I’ve done a lot for this county.” — Former Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office detective Corey Farris in January after being placed on paid administrative leave.
“I just tried to keep myself awake. I knew if I went to sleep it might have been bad.” — Owatonna man Lyndon Schewe in January after crashing his vehicle off of Interstate 90, down a hill and into Wedge Creek. He was found six hours after the crash.
“I really believe you’re leading the way for the rest of the country.” — National Geographic explorer and author Dan Buettner in June during an event in downtown Albert Lea.
“I just wanted to prove the point that there are people out there who are talking.” — Albert Lean Kathy Diaz, who in June submitted a petition to the Albert Lea City Council regarding the departure of former City Manager Jim Norman.
“Within a few minutes there were flames, then all of a sudden everything went.” — Ellendale resident Stephanie Kibler June 14 after a fire started at her neighbor’s house, 403 Fourth Ave. W.
“All of us feel this terrible tragedy clear into our bones.” — the Rev. Wendy Gillan of Northwood United Methodist Church at a candlelight vigil July 11 following the deaths of two Northwood-Kensett Elementary School students in a crash near Hanlontown, Iowa.
“Your point has been made. Now show some respect. It’s affecting everyone in the community.” — Albert Lea resident Monica Hernandez in August during a protest to a message on an electronic sign on the side of Dima Corp. 628 Pearl St.
“I’m outraged. I’m absolutely outraged that you could make that decision without looking at the history of that.” — Albert Lea resident Debra Blowers during an August Albert Lea City Council meeting discussing the expanding disc golf course at Bancroft Bay Park.
“When I call 911, I want response, whether it be from the fire department or the police department” — Albert Lea resident Lynn Berven, father of Albert Lea firefighter Brett Berven, during a public hearing in August about restoring a full-time firefighter crew.
“The felony convictions carry the same weight in an employer’s mind as does a murder charge — they are both called felonies. Therefore, it makes my efforts to become a productive citizen with gainful employment near impossible, especially in this economy.” — Former Albert Lea City Manager Jim Norman after the Minnesota Court of Appeals in September sustained his six felony convictions for missing the city-issued credit card for personal purchases.
“Now that we have the dredge, we’ve made a clear statement about what direction we’re going. It was a big piece of the puzzle.” — Shell Rock River Watershed District Administrator Brett Behnke in September after district officials approved the purchase of a dredge, pumps and other equipment needed to clean out Fountain and Albert Lea lakes.
“This is a witch hunt. I’m not saying I’m a victim. I’m saying I don’t deserve this. I’ve done some good things in this county.” — Former Freeborn County Jail Administrator Marcellino Peña in October after he was terminated from his job amid allegations of harassment.
“My whole life I can’t remember my knees shaking like this.” — District 27A Rep.-elect Shannon Savick after finding out Nov. 6 that she defeated incumbent District 27A Rep. Rich Murray.
“It was everything a Democrat would possibly want in an election.” — Freeborn County DFL Chairwoman Robin Brown Nov. 7 in response to the results of the general election.
“The reality is that people who have to use this building have to use it for certain things, and they should not be having to walk through smoke.” — Albert Lea Mayor Vern Rasmussen after a vote in December prohibiting tobacco-related products around City Hall.
“We have had enough time and there’s been enough education out there and notice to the public that this is illegal behavior to send, to receive and to retransmit these types of photographs. Because of that, in the right situation, with the right photographs, I will certainly charge.” — Freeborn County Attorney Craig Nelson in December about the increasing efforts to curb teen sexting.
“We have to just put those fears to the side when it comes to this. As much as our hearts are breaking for those kids in Newtown, we have to keep moving forward.” — Hawthorne Elementary School Principal Karen Zwolenski in December after a school shooting in Connecticut killed 20 students.