Three honored for volunteer service
[FEB. 4, 2006] Three Lincoln residents with a combined 73 years of volunteer service received president's awards at the St. John United Church of Christ annual meeting on Jan. 22.
Ray and Gertrude Leesman and Valerie Coombs were honored for their years of "outstanding accomplishments in volunteer service." The church council president, Randy Pech of rural Lincoln, made the presentation.
For 22 years Gertrude Leesman has participated in St. John Church's Meals on Wheels delivery route. Her husband began making the deliveries one year after she did. Currently the two also chair the operation, in which each weekday one or two volunteers deliver meals in the vicinity of Woodlawn Road for CIEDC. St. John is the only church in Lincoln with a regular delivery route for Meals on Wheels.
In addition, since the late 1980s the Leesmans have served the church as communion coordinators. Ray Leesman has also been a member of the stewardship committee and the church council, serving once as interim president. He is a funeral color guard participant for Legion, AMVETSs and VFW and has walked as a cancer survivor in the local Relay For Life.
Valerie Coombs has taught Sunday school for St. John United Church of Christ for approximately 30 years, beginning as a high school student. Having taught from kindergarten through fifth-grade classes, she currently works with first- and second-graders. In addition, for about 15 years she has chaired the Christian education committee. Rounding out her service to young people, Coombs has advised the church youth group for 25 years.
Coombs has also served as member and co-chair of the church Four Seasons committee. She says of her extensive service, "I really couldn't do it without all the support and help from other church members."
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