Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Franzen Receives Quilt of Valor

Raymond Franzen is presented a Quilt of Valor at a ceremony at the Exeter Legion.  Placing the quilt around him are his daughters Brenda Motis, left, and Corinne Downey, right.

Raymond Franzen of Exeter was honored with a Quilt of Valor during a ceremony held Friday, July 26 at the Exeter American Legion Home.

Franzen, a Korean War Veteran, was set to receive the honor in June but a death in his family postponed the presentation.

The ceremony was well attended with Franzen’s wife, Jeannette, in the audience along with several of his grandchildren, sons-in-law, his siblings and other family members.

Marsha Jorgensen and Pat Becker are the local representatives for the Quilt of Valor program.  

Jorgensen gave a brief history of the program explaining that it was started in 2003 by Catherine Roberts who son was deployed in Iraq.  After a dream gave her the idea that quilts from home would be comforting to those serving, she began to make them to award to active military along with veterans.  

Roberts created a non-profit foundation to guide the project.  Since 2003 over 220,000 quilts have been awarded to those who have served.

Becker read a brief history of Franzen’s service.

Franzen appreciated the idea of the quilt of valor program, “I think it’s great.  It means you took an oath to serve your country and they are honoring that.  It makes a guy feel good about everything.”

The quilt awarded to Fransen was made by Carol Harris, an Exeter native who now lives in North Carolina. Franzen was taught by Harris’ mother, Jane Kaiser, in grade school and Franzen was an honorary pallbearer at Kaiser’s funeral.

Franzen volunteered for service January 18,1961.  He did his basic training at Fort Riley, Kan. and then went to Fort Sill, Okla. for artillery survey school. He also graduated from advanced artillery survey school before heading to Fort Dix and then to Germany where he was stationed with Headquarters Battalion 9th Field Artillery based in Kitzingen, 50 miles south southeast of Frankfurt, Germany.

Franzen and his unit ran surveying equipment to calculate coordinates for firing rockets and artillery.  They were general support for the third infantry.

Franzen served 16 months overseas.  Upon returning home he was called to active reserve and served two years active duty, two years active reserve, and two years inactive reserve.  His rank was Specialist 5.

After the ceremony each of the Legion members saluted Franzen and honored him for his service.  Audience members also took the opportunity to thank Franzen for his sacrifice to his country.

“The mission of the Quilt of Valor foundation is to cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing quilts of valor.”

Fillmore County Residents Have Notification Options

Fillmore County residents currently have the opportunity to register for notifications about public safety, community information, severe weather alerts and emergencies through the Fillmore County Community Alert System.

Notifications can be received on your landline, cell phone, email and on Facebook.  Fillmore County Emergency Manager Jim Dunker is very positive about the new system, “The AlertSense notification system is a very versatile system in that it can provide more than just weather notifications.  Safety and event notifications can also be received.”

Public safety notifications that subscribers might receive include criminal activity, active shooter/intruder, imminent danger, hazardous materials issues, wildfire, floods, shelter in place and evacuation notifications.

The community event notification component includes notifications of road closures, snow emergencies, power outages, water main shut-offs, 911 outages or utility disruptions.  Many residents currently receive severe weather alerts but may not know that their location can be tailored and the severity of level of notification.

There are two ways that county residents may be included in these notifications.  First, they should go online to register their cell phone at http://public.alertsense.com/Signup/?regionid=1288  The second option is to download the free MyAlerts app available in stores online which allows you to sign  up for notifications from various locations. For example, if you take a camping trip in the county 20 miles away from your home you can change your location to the camping location so that you can receive any severe weather notifications while in the area.

Dunker emphasized. “Any shared information remains private and is only used to deliver subscribed emergency alerts and community notifications.”

Sunday, August 4, 2019


2019 IPAWS National Test

FEMA, in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and radio and television Emergency Alert System (EAS) participants, will conduct a nationwide test of EAS beginning at 2:20 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, August 7th, 2019. A backup date is scheduled for Wednesday, August 21st, 2019, if needed. The test, which uses IPAWS, is a key way to assess the operational readiness of the Nation’s alert and warning infrastructures for distribution of a national message and determine whether technological improvements are warranted.
Public safety officials need to be sure that they are able to get urgent, life-saving alerts to the public in times of an emergency or disaster. This year’s test will evaluate the readiness of our national alerting capability in the absence of internet connectivity, focusing on the capability of EAS radio and television providers to distribute a test message nationwide.
The 2019 IPAWS National Test of EAS will broadcast a test message that is approximately one minute long. Broadcast radio and television, cable, wireline service providers, and direct broadcast satellite service providers will each broadcast the test message once within a few minutes of the test. The national EAS test message will look and sound very much like the regular Required Monthly Test messages broadcast by all EAS participants.
This will be the first time since the adoption of the National Periodic Test (NPT) EAS Event Code that FEMA has conducted a nationwide EAS test using the NPT code and initiation of the test message from the National Public Warning System component of IPAWS.
The EAS test message is expected to have limited impact on the public with only a minor interruption to regular radio and television programs. The EAS test message will be: “THIS IS A TEST of the National Emergency Alert System. This system was developed by broadcast and cable operators in voluntary cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Communication Commission, and local authorities to keep you informed in the event of an emergency. If this had been an actual emergency an official message would have followed the tone alert you heard at the start of this message. No action is required."
The FCC requires all EAS Participants – that is, radio and television broadcasters, cable systems, satellite radio and television providers, and wireline video providers – to participate in this test and collects data through the EAS Test Reporting System.
The FEMA IPAWS program continues to examine how to make the test message and all alert and warning messages more accessible to those with access and functional needs, and with limited English proficiency. Due to technical limitations of the aural only over-the-air EAS relay that will be used for this year’s test, there will be no supporting English or Spanish full message text display on television screens.
Please contact the IPAWS Program Management Office at IPAWS@fema.dhs.gov if you have any questions.