Another steel-clad challenge announcedJohnson builds on Lundberg challenge as Bong capital campaign match is met
By: By Deb Krieg, Special to the Superior Telegram, Superior Telegram
An S.O.S. was sent out.
And, within hours a business synonymous with Superior and building with integrity did a bold dot, dot dash on a check and a pledge sheet which left a team of veteran supporters beaming in the Twin Ports Friday.
RJS and affiliated companies, which built the state of the art hangar that encompasses Richard Bong Veterans Historical Center along the Lake Superior harbor, not only made certain the museum’s capital campaign met the Lundberg family of Poplar’s “$100,000 in 100 Days” pledge match before time ran out. It sent the fundraising spiraling into another dimension and over the top with 21 days still left on the promotional clock and another stellar Todd Johnson company issuing a steel-clad challenge for others to come aboard.
Neighboring Great Laker, Fraser Shipyards Inc., announced it would match dollar for dollar up to $12,500 Friday, said Judy Weber of Superior, who has led with decorated Vietnam veteran and aerospace consultant John Bremer of Clermont, Fla., the grassroots effort to make certain that the museum advances not only its mission to honor all veterans since World War II, but expands educational and interactive exhibits for its hometown and its history.
Johnson said he was hoping his contributions would build on the “magnanimous” effort the Lundbergs had launched and would capture new contributors and donations in the final weeks.
“Statements like these and gestures like this are what makes this great community we call home what it is, simply Superior,” claimed Weber.
“The names that have come to the forefront of our campaign in the past 77 days are no strangers and are, in every since of the word, pioneers of pride and progression and passionate about Superior and this magnificient great lakes region,” Weber said.
Names include, in no particular order, Lundberg, Johnson, Campbell, Manion, Mahan, Sauter, Podratz, Pedersen, Patterson, Palm, Buckley, Bremer, Bong, Erickson, Fechtelkotter, Lake, Miller, McNutt, Murphy, Sinnott, Aker, Anderson, Krieg, Guenard, Underdale, Peterson, Klosowski, Haugland, Hannula, Jacobson, Johnson, Falk, Fleisch, Flenz, Christensen, Hursh, Huset, Hinz, Lehman, Licari, Lisdahl, McMahan, Minahan, Wheeler, Urbaniak, Sleeper, Swenson, Nicoloff, Owens, Peters, Renman, Roy, Ryan, Saeger, Sullivan, Sedin, Sher, Sladky, Siter, Smith, Stein, Wallgren, Weber, Teck, Manderscheid, Neuman, Gigliotti, Homan and more, she said.
Weber said a complete listing of the 91 contributors to date who have donated including businesses and community organizations from American Legion Post 435 post and its auxiliary to VFW Post 1091 to RJS & Affiliated Companies, Fraser Shipyard Inc., National Bank of Commerce, ICO, Murphy Oil, Northwest Outlet, Lincoln Stores, Campbell Lumber, Benson Electric, Sauter Fairchild, Superior Glass, Telephone Associates, and are highlighted at www.bvhcenter.org to acknowledge every contribution.
Donations in essence for the next three weeks are all doubled and according to Weber, “it just doesn’t get any better than that….”
The museum features over 7,000 pieces of history, a tile wall honoring over 1,700 Northland families and boasts a representation of some 15,000 veterans, with collections and archiving continuing daily.
For information on the capital campaign or adding a local hero and vets name, call Bob Fuhrman, director, (715) 392-7151.