We lost our good friend John on January 11, 2005 to cancer. He will always be a part of the Feather.
The wind beneath our wings
The volunteers listed below are the people that make The Feather possible. Rehabilitation is never the word "I", it is always "WE" Without these volunteers The Feather does not exist. Caring for wildlife requires many different personalities with the same common interest. This common interest brings us all together. Each of these individuals have their own lives, but they take the time to share and care about the birds here at The Feather.
The first person to come to the Feather back in 1988 was Don Baumgartner. Don and his wife Sue have two sons, Eric and Craig. Don works for Boldt Construction out of Appleton. Don came here looking for advise on bluebirds and made the mistake of asking what was in the large cage in the front yard, it was a red-tailed hawk named Anny. He was hooked... There is not one thing that Don has not done here for the birds. We here at the Feather hope that this relationship is a "death do us part" one.
My good friend Wendy Mayr found the Feather through Don. Wendy and her husband, John, live in Appleton and share their lives with their son Billy and three feline persons. On Wendy's first time here she and Don sat in the back seat of the school bus I drive and I put food on the hack box and whistled three times and waited...the male red tailed hawk came in for supper. Wendy has been with us since that eventful day back in the summer of 1998. Wendy is a general helper when her job permits and she is an "outstanding" program person with the birds.
They say that for every bad thing, there is a good thing to balance it.....well John Wieneke is the good side of a bad thing. Back in 1994 a tornado went through here and took down the deer yard and nine mature trees. John and his wife Nancy came to take photos for the local paper and John has given since then to the Feather. He has designed and completed many projects (some requiring a lot of help, some by himself), to his credit are some 15 new pens, and the two crane yards. John has two grown children and two grandsons, that he idolizes, pictured with him on this site. John and I share a very special common bond.. hearing the first call of the returning sandhill cranes to Wisconsin each spring.
Mr. Dean Mielke came aboard in 1990. I met Dean at a wildlife banquet, he was showing photos of a goshawk he was feeding in his back yard in Appleton. Dean and his wife Sheri share their home with three feline persons and have many other wild things that come to their door to be fed. Dean manages his back yard for wildlife. He feeds upwards from 100-200 ducks every spring. The ducks hang out in the creek behind his home. He builds brush piles and other hiding places, puts out water and many feeding stations to meet the needs of all the wild things which visit his yard. Dean has proven that even though a person lives in the city one can still share a backyard with whatever finds its way to you. Dean does all that we ask of him for the Feather and more.
Next on the list is Ron Voelz from Appleton. Ron shares his life with his wife Mary and his son Jas and also Otis the sheepdog. Ron is a painter by trade. His life long friend is Otis. Otis goes everywhere with Ron, except all-night fishing. Ron relieves us here once a week with the every day chores. These jobs are not glamour jobs, but Ron pitches in without complaining. Ron has been with us now for some nine years.
Ginny Perrault found us through Dean Mielke in 2000. Both she and Dean worked at Kimberly Clark in Neenah. Ginny is a sheltie rescue person. Ginny and Dean share the transportation of birds to the vets in Appleton. Ginny is an "all round" person for the Feather, from cleaning, transporting, general helper and great program person with the birds.
Lynn Driessen, from Appleton, is our legal person. Lynn is a law clerk and had done rehabbing before we met her. She is a quiet person and the birds take to her because of this. She puts them at ease when doing programs.
Barb Jeffers came aboard in the summer of 2005. I had known Barb for some years before, but we never thought to ask her to help us. Barb has five grown daughters and is now retired. She lives close and is always more than willing to come on a moments notice to help here.
Kevin Pullen is the newest volunteer at the Feather. Kevin comes to us though Don Baumgartner. Kevin is an electrician at Theda Clark hospital in Neenah. He and his wife Tammie have two sons, Brett and Reive. This quiet soft spoken man is a great asset to us.
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