The ladies of the Quilter’s Therapy Quilt Club design and either hand or machine sew colorful red, white, and blue patriotic themed quilts for the community’s veterans through their project, Quilts for Veterans. The quilts protect and provide warmth and comfort for veterans every night.
Traditional quilt patterns are often used: Ohio Star, Fence Rail, and Log Cabin. Many of the quilts feature patriotic images as well, such as a Bald Eagle, U.S. flag, or a praying Soldier. The quilts are a way of saying thank you to area veterans for their service.
In honor of Veterans Day, the quilters honored 11 area veterans on Sunday, November 14, at the Mabel Methodist Church. The vibrant handmade quilts are gently wrapped around the veterans’ shoulders in recognition of their service to our country. Terese Housker, Lowell Walhus, Glenn Fishbourn, Lyle Bjerke, Jerry Kyseth, Marvin Slafter, Larry Benson, Richard Benson, Ozzie Landsom, Norval Ladsten, and Bob Wedmann each received a quilt.
Four local heroes living at Green Lea Senior Living in Mabel were also thanked for their service this month. The beautiful patriotic quilts from the Quilter’s Therapy Quilt Club graced the laps of Eldon Iverson, Carl Everson, Karen Hansen, and Oscar Armstrong.
The number of members range from eight to 12 ladies throughout the year and hail from Newburg, Harmony, Hesper, Mabel, Canton, and Burr Oak. The ladies meet the first Monday of every month at the Mabel Methodist Church and use their talents to design, sew, and quilt one-of-a-kind quilts for area veterans.
“The ladies gather every month to have fun and make quilts,” shared President Sue Blaess.
The quilters are Lita Frederickson, Mary Myhre, Helen Williams, Dorothy Coons, Sue Blaess, Pam Seebach, Lisa Vang, Anita Schissel, Janice Spande, Gen Haakenstad, JoAnn Pierce, and Sheila Stahnke.
In the past, the ladies met at the Mabel Telephone Company and Crazy Quilts. The group is now meeting at the Mabel Methodist Church.
In addition to giving 15quilts to veterans, the talented quilters provided quilts to two families in the area that lost their homes to fires this year and have donated quilts to local benefits.
Due to the pandemic, the group did not distribute any quilts last year. However, the group has made and donated 69 quilts since 2015, an impressive output for a small group of quilters!
In addition, the ladies also organize the annual quilt show held at the Mabel Community Center during the Hesper-Mabel Steam Engine Days celebration every September. There are so many quilts on display that the Center’s meeting room is filled from corner to corner. Donations raised during the show are used to buy quilting supplies and fabric so the group can continue to make quilts for our veterans.
The 501(c)3 nonprofit organization received funds from MiEnergy, the Mabel Cooperative Telephone Company, and Thrivent to purchase supplies.
Friends, family, and neighbors are encouraged to recommend veterans that have not received a quilt. The group recognizes any veteran that has served. Due to privacy laws, local veteran organizations cannot divulge the names of veterans. The group relies on the public to recommend veterans to recognize. Contact President Sue Blaess at (507) 493-5526 if you know a veteran who would appreciate receiving a quilt.