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Living History: Crandall named 1988 Minnesota Professional of the Year

Karen Crandall. File photo.

30 years ago

Excerpts from the July 28, 1988 Pioneer Journal

• Crandall named 1988 Minnesota Professional of the Year

Friday afternoon, July 15, about 30 friends and coworkers of Karen Crandall surprised her at Pembina Trail Group Home in Wadena. Cass Robinson, President of ARC Wadena County informed her that she was selected "Professional of the Year" by the ARC Minnesota. The award will be presented to her on Aug. 20 at the annual awards banquet in St. Cloud.

The Professional of the Year award had been established to honor a professional person who, during the past year, has given significant time and personal effort, beyond the requirements of their paid position, to serving people with mental retardation. Consideration is given toward amount and consistency of effort devoted, type of service performed, innovative nature of service or program and contribution to a better life for an individual or group.

Crandall is Administrator of Pembina Trail Group Home in Wadena and is program director. She is also the Director of Share-a-Home, Inc. for foster care and waivered services.

In addition to closely overseeing custodial care and programming for the eight residents of the group home, she keeps aware of the needs of 13 clients who receive foster care, respite care and waivered services.

Besides the rapport Crandall has with her staff members, she maintains a good working relationship with the board members of both of the above non-profit organizations and with the county social services personnel.

Crandall strives to help each of her clients live as full and satisfying lives as they are able and in doing so, she is a friend to all with whom she comes in contact.

80 years ago

Excerpts from the July 28, 1938 Pioneer Journal

State plans drastic curb on illegal auto lights

"Spotlight cops" will get you if you don't watch out.

Far from satisfied with results obtained in the recent nine-month war against defective motor vehicle lights and improper dimming and determined to stamp out the headlight menace, M.J. Murray, chief of the state highway patrol, has notified patrolman Art Ousley of Wadena that "flying squadrons" have been designated to cruise the entire state system seeking headlight law offenders.

The present method of nabbing headlight law offenders presents serious drawbacks. Patrolmen on meeting a car that does not dim its headlights within the prescribed distance of 500 feet, or which only has one light or defective lights, must speed to the first crossing and then turn in pursuit of the violator. By the time a patrol car is able to turn without endangering traffic, the car being chased is usually lost in the distance or so deep in traffic that it is impossible for the patrolman to determine the machine with accuracy.

As a result, Chief Murray is equipping cruising squadrons with powerful searchlights. These squadrons will be stationed along the highway and after an offending vehicle passes, these lights will be switched on to pick up the license number. There will be no pursuit. Instead, a ticket will be sent to the owner of the car ordering him to appear in court or to make adjustments, depending on the seriousness of the offense.

The location of these light checking stations will not be announced and at one time or another may be in action at almost every strategic point on the highway system.

"This action may seem drastic," Murray said, "but the headlight menace comprises one of our most dangerous and death-dealing traffic hazards. The patrol plans to go to any legal limit to curb it."