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Vol. 6 No. 2 - September 1995 to March 1996

The Cherished 'Bear' of St. Peter's

By Phyllis K. Thompson
St. Peter's College Alumni/ae Coordinator

Thursday, September 21, 1995, The Humboldt (SK.) Journal. On Saturday afternoon, Aug. 26, the Alumni/ae Association of St. Peter's College held a barbecue; it was planned as a warm-up to next year's 75th Alumni/ae Reunion which will be held the long weekend of August '96. The grads who organized this occasion decided it also would be a good opportunity to "Roast the Bear", the one and only Rev. Albert Ruetz, OSB.

Albert Ruetz is a descendant of Caroline Lobsinger and Frank Ruetz of the House of Peter.

Ruetz has been a part of the College for 55 years: a student from 1940-43, and a faculty member since his ordination in 1949. Some though this fete was a celebration of Father Albert's retirement, but to paraphrase Mark Twain, it must be noted that reports of his retirement are greatly exaggerated. Students who now fill his classes at 8:30 every morning can attest to this.

The day's activities began at 1 pm with tours of the College, the Abbey grounds, the Press building and its work and of the work in progress on the new organ for Saints Peter and Paul Abbey Church. For some alumni/ae, it was also the first time they saw the new Abbey church and bell tower.

The Roast began at 3:30 pm in the Abbey's Jerome Assembly Room; Bill Selnes (1967-71) and Craig Dale (1993-95) co-emceed the proceedings and led the audience through a two hour program of greetings, roasts and musical interludes. Included among the guests were Father Albert's nephews: Alan Ruetz (1963-67) and his wife, Joanne, from Shaunavon, and Ronald Ruetz (1966-69) and his wife Cheryl, of Regina.

Special greetings were brought by members of the immediate College "family": Wendy Schissel and Barry Popowich, the Co-Presidents; Grant McConnell, co-chair of the Faculty Association; new grad, Kim Jackson (1994-95); and current student, Terrie Kinar. In addition, there were many others in attendance.

It was clear, listening to these speakers that Father Albert is very much respected and loved. Dr. Thompson noted particularly that "the College of Arts and Science has had a long and increasingly fruitful relationship with St. Peter's College, and one of the things I've always admired and appreciated about St. Peter's is the emphasis on teaching, on small classes, on a warm, caring relationship between those who teach and those who learn. It's a pleasure to join with you this afternoon in what we most enjoy doing in the College of Arts and Sciences - and that is to celebrate teaching. I celebrate with you today the teaching Father Albert exemplifies."

Humor was not absent from the greeters' presentations, but it certainly was the foundation of the comments made by those who were invited specifically to "roast the Bear".

Corie Hetzel (1982-83) was a student in Father Albert's classes. She reminded everyone how handily he managed to tie students' losses at math problems to his winning of the students' desserts at their next meal! Another reminisced about how hard it was to forget the "bear's measured tread through the dorms as the fellows tried to get to sleep at night." It was also made clear that Father Albert's measured tread was a plus because "never in a rush, he skillfully took us through the wonder of numbers - from the intricacies of algebra to the pleasures of calculus."

Alan Ruetz and Bill Allen (1960-65) were two other roasters; the stories they told were hilarious, and both reminded the current students that Father Albert is much more mellow now than he was in their day. Hilarity aside though, both came round to admitting their deep respect and affection for a man who very much represents what St. Peter's College is all about.

Abbot Peter Novecosky, OSB, was the last person to roast Father Albert and his quips were only part of his presentation. Abbot Peter noted the various definitions of "bear" in the dictionary and how they apply to Father Albert. When he got to the Ursa Major and Ursa Minor constellations, Abbot Peter left the humor behind in order to remind the audience that Father Albert is truly a star math teacher, a star pastor...

In his remarks, the Abbot also quoted Father Albert from the 1962 yearbook, the Petralogue. As Rector of the College at that time, Father Albert wrote: "May these pages recall especially the ideals which have been set before you so often. If this yearbook recalls these ideals to your mind in future years and spurs you on to put them into practice, it will have served a very real purpose." Abbot Peter concluded by saying that those gathered that afternoon were "honoring a man who not only reminds us of these ideals, but who also has put them into practice."

Four musical interludes spiced up the activities of the day, and during the roast, each presenter gave Father Albert a gift; some were for him to keep, some were books that will soon go to the patient's reading room at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Father Albert's name. However the main gift he received was a Teddy bear created in stained glass and presented by Father Alfred.

Father Albert smiled often during the roast, and showed off the many different "bears" he had received through the years. When he had the audience's full attention, he coyly and enticingly stripped! Off came the clerical collar and shirt to reveal a forest green t-shirt dominated by a magnificent grizzly bear!

The barbecue was held in the gym because the afternoon had been so overcast - a wise decision since it did rain later. Dessert was a cake that had been specially decorated, "We Cherish Our Bear," which Father Albert cut and served in grand style.

The day's festivities ended, appropriately enough, with a call to Vigils. Joyously too, for all the bells in the new tower pealed, and for longer than usual - a fitting tribute to Father Albert as teacher and an acknowledgment that, as monk, Father Albert's "measured stride" takes him to prayer everyday at that time.

Despite the changing weather, the entire afternoon was a success, not just because so many grads and friends of the College and Father Albert gathered to share some quality time, but because the quality of Father Albert's teaching and his overall commitment to the College and its students deserved and received a worthy tribute. (House of Peter)

Fr. Wayne Lawrence Lobsinger

Wayne Lobsinger Ordained Diocese Priest On May 7th

Wayne Lawrence Lobsinger, son of Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence E. Lobsinger, was ordained a Priest in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Hamilton last May 7th and since then has been serving as associate pastor at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Hamilton.

It is a large parish with 2,700 families, two elementary schools and a large nursing home in the parish boundaries.
Last summer, Father Lobsinger had the opportunity to visit France and Ireland, and while at Lourdes, offered special prayers for all members of the Lobsinger Family. (House of Louis)

Steven R. Lobsinger

Steven R. Lobsinger Earns OU EE Degree

Steven Richard Lobsinger, son of Robert and Susan Lobsinger of Newkirk, OK., graduated from the University of Oklahoma College of Engineering on Saturday, December 16, 1995 during Convocation Ceremonies in Holmberg Hall, Norman, Oklahoma.

An electrical engineer, Steven has accepted a position with Seagate Corporation, manufacturers of computer hard drives and storage systems in Oklahoma City.

He and Darcie Oakley (shirttail relative of Annie) plan to be married next January after she graduates from OU and gets her degree in accounting.

Steven is the youngest of 4 children, all graduates of the University of Oklahoma. Michael Robert is the oldest, an aerospace engineer now working for Beech Aircraft in Wichita, KS. Judy Sue (Crabtree) will have her Ph. D. in Bio-Chemistry by the time you read this. John Allen is a Civil Engineer working for Star Construction Company in Oklahoma City.

Lobsinger - Tarkington Wedding
Set For April 20 In Oklahoma City

Mr. and Mrs. Gary Tarkington and Jeani Tarkington, all of Oklahoma City, announce the engagement and approaching marriage of their daughter, Shannon Denise Tarkington, to John Allen Lobsinger, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert W. Lobsinger, Newkirk, OK.

John A. Lobsinger and Shannon D. Tarkington

The wedding will be held at 7:00 pm on April 20, 1996 at the Oklahoma Heritage Center. An open invitation is extended to all family and friends to attend.

The future bride is a 1989 graduate of Moore High School. She received a Civil Engineering degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1994, and is currently employed by Star Building Systems, Oklahoma City.

The prospective bridegroom is a 1988 graduate of Newkirk High School. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1992 with a Civil Engineering degree and is also employed by Star Building Systems.

New Arrivals - Birth Announcements 

Ericka Laine Robson

Paul and Heather Robson of Meaford, ON., happily announce the birth of their new daughter, Ericka Laine, on February 4, 1996, weighing in at 8 lbs 4 ozs. Proud grandparents are Doreen and Bill Robson of Chesley, ON. (House of Peter)

From The Mailbag...

Short note from Bernie and Shawn Braun, Buchanan, GA, informs us of the death of her mother, Norma J. Braun, and copy of obituary notice reprinted in this newsletter. (House of Joseph )

Caroline Lobsinger of Sandpoint, ID., writes us: "We have all enjoyed your newsletter immensely and love to find out new tidbits and information about the Lobsinger family. To give you a little background on myself... my Dad is Ralph Lobsinger, (Kennewick, WA.) The son of Lorenz Joseph Lobsinger and his second wife, Goldie May (Jackson). "

Her mother is Jacqueline Alyce Augier Lobsinger. Until Caroline's letter, we knew nothing of her branch of the family except that her dad has been on the mailing list for years.

Ralph Lobsinger and Kyle Collins

Ralph Lobsinger recently retired from the Fast Flux Test Facility, a part of the Hanford Reservation, where he worked for the past 30 years. Mrs. Lobsinger keeps busy gardening and looking after their six kids and assorted in-laws, and grandchildren.

Of their children, Julie is the oldest, born 1959, and is married to Dana Cummings. They have two boys, Brian 7, and Tanner 4, and live in Kennewick, WA. Julie is a school teacher in Pasco, WA and Dana is a mortgage banker at a firm specializing in farm financing in Pasco. Brian is a 2nd grade soccer player, and Tanner started kindergarten this year.

Valerie is next of the 6 kids, born 1960. She is a clothing buyer in Los Angeles, CA. She makes several trips a year to New York and one of her recent buying trips was delayed by the big blizzard this year.

Shephanie and Eric, twins born 1962, are next in line. Stephanie is married to John Collins and they have a boy, Kyle, in the "terrible two's", and just had a baby girl named Sierra on New Year's Eve. John is a foreign engine importer and Steph is busy keeping track of Kyle. They live in Richland, WA.

Erick Lobsinger

Eric is in the Navy, stationed aboard the USS Independence, based in Japan. He likes the region, and may stay there or near Japan.

Caroline is next. She was born in 1964 and is a reporter for a small daily newspaper in Sandpoint, ID., where she covers politics, health, and whatever comes across the desk.

Steve is the youngest in the family - born 1966. He is finishing up his business degree with Washington State University.

Caroline says she is just getting interested in genealogy, and we sent her our computer files on the family.

Her folks are getting used to retirement, and are thinking about taking a trip - maybe to France in the next year or two, and also to the Sturgeon, Pennsylvania area, where her mom's family lives.
We put her brother Eric's address on the mailing list, and as soon as she sends us the addresses of her other siblings, we'll add them as well. (House of Michel)

Holiday letter arrived from John and Dolores Schmidt, Mildmay, ON.. She sent the sad news of the death of young Pamela Robson, who simply did not wake up one day. Dolores reports that is the third similar case in their area this year.

Dolores also sends us some updated addresses, for which we are thankful, and reminds us of the Lobsinger Reunion in Mildmay to be held June 9th this year.

Marie (Lobsinger) Moran, of Ontario and lately of Sidney, B.C., sent us another nice long letter this year. We connected her with some Michigan relatives a few months ago, and they are having a big time catching up, and preparing for a Fischer family reunion in August.

Marie has been spending quite a bit of time out west on the "big island" with her daughter, son-in-law and their family. They are medical doctors, busy working shifts in the emergency room and involved with their sports medicine practice. Her daughter Jane (Flannigan) went to Sophia, Bulgaria for the European Figure Skating Championship as one of the medical supervisors with the International Skating Union. Then she went to Germany for the Speed Skating Championships. Marie says Jane keeps in touch with family during these trips via the Internet and her laptop computer.

On a recent holiday, they visited Apex skiing resort (not as fancy as Whistler, she says), where she managed a bit of cross country, but doesn't try any downhill anymore.

Marie says she hasn't had time to look up any of the Lobsinger bunch in the area yet, but hopes to. She once lived in Nanimo back in the early '40s when her late husband Joe was in the army. (House of Peter)

Gregory Lang writes asking about a Michael Lobsinger in Alberta. Wants to know if he is grandson of Dr. Allan Lobsinger. Not to our knowledge. But our lists may have gaps yet. There is a Michael Lobsinger, grandson of Frank Hugh Lobsinger, Allen Lobsinger's brother, however. (House of Peter)

Jean and Ron Kay, Thornbury, ON., write with info on their branch of the crew. They are descendants of George and Maria Lobsinger and related to Marie, Lorne, Ruby, and Rita in Vancouver area and the Colletts near Merritt.
During a summer visit, they poked around Merritt, B.C. and found the old Collett Ranch, where they met with Allan Collett's wife Gloria and their daughter Caroline Pound.

They also sent us parts of the family of George and Maria to add to our collection of details. One thing we are still missing for sure is the maiden name of Maria. We have two different versions or corruptions and don't know which, if either, is correct. Anybody know?

Jean and Ron also use a Mac Computer, so we sent them our data base to play with. Hope they enjoy it.

Ruth Ann (Schnarr) and Bob Wilhelm of Windsor, ON., write, "Keep up your great work! It's neat to read about the family." She is a granddaughter of Anne Lobsinger Schnarr. (House of Louis)

Teresa and Leonard Walsh, Brantford, ON, write all is well in their family, but 5 of their grandchildren had tonsils out during the past summer!. Before that, Teresa and a girl friend got to spend "10 glorious days in London, England."

Her class (1945) from St. Joseph's Hospital in Hamilton, ON., held a 50th year reunion last June and she was in charge of the luncheon for about 40 people. Then on July 1st, she became a grandmother again, when Reba Pearson was born to her daughter Cathy and husband Ripley Pearson.

In August, Leonard's mother died peacefully in her own home at the age of 103. Their boys, Pat and Michael from out west came home for the funeral, but didn't get to stay very long.

Michael, Michelle, and Jamie Walsh are now living in Fraser Lake, B.C. and find it much more convenient than living in the country, where they were before.

Pat and Cheryl Walsh and Mikey, from Blairmore, AB., are relocating to Airdree, about 10 minutes from Calgary.

Teresa also sent us a new address for Carol Anne Shoesmith, Owen Sound, ON., and a note that her son Jeff graduated from high school at the end of last year. (House of Louis)

John, Barb, and Joey Zitars, Waterloo, ON., sent some postage money and a short note. We appreciate that. Joey must be a new kid in their lives. Anyway, we don't have him on the data base yet, so John and Barb, send us some more info... (House of Louis)

Received a greeting card from Mike and Barbara Mier inside a card and note from Kathy Tompkins and her sister Theresa Allen, Otisville, MI. The antique card was among her Dad's (Ronald Hamblin) old photos. The card has a photo of their uncle's old farm house. (House of Joseph)

Patrick Lobsinger of Lake Worth, FL., sent photos of his two kids, Matthew and Samantha, which are reprinted here. (House of Peter)

Samantha Lobsinger - Matthew Lobsinger

Linda D'Amour sends us a new address and family photo. We have made the address correction and the family pix is printed here somewhere. Thanks. (House of George)

Paul D'Amour Family: Lori, Paul, Linda, and John Paul

Leo S. Ruetz, Shaunavon, SK., sent us the story about Fr. Albert Ruetz, OSB, called the "Bear of St. Peter's". It is from the Humboldt Journal, whom we hope will excuse us for reprinting it without contacting them first. Leo took a bus tour to the Maritimes and Eastern States during the fall, and says he may even find time to venture down to Oklahoma sometime. We're looking forward to it. (House of Peter)

Penny and Al Spidel, Nanaimo, B.C., sent Christmas greetings and reports that daughter Alicia is still in UBC studying and will graduate in '97 with a double major in Pharmacology and Bio Psychology. Their son Mike has added another truck to his hauling business and both are busy and productive. Al and Penny are fine and trying to stay out of mischief. (House of George)

Beverly and Harvey Lobsinger, Edina, MN., send greetings and kids me a bit about Time Warner taking over my little rural newspaper. Boy do I wish they would! They're the only ones left with money, and I'm ready to retire from this rag! (House of Peter)

The pictures of Jimmy Lobsinger and his brother David are courtesy of their parents, Jim and Jody Lobsinger of Peoria, AZ. The kids are growing up fast. (House of Peter)

Teresa and Len Walsh, Branford, ON., sent Christmas greetings and a short note, but most of their news was in their letter earlier. See earlier note. (House of Louis)

Harold and Allean Lobsinger, Apache Junction, AZ., and Denver, CO., write that all is fine with them and they send glad tidings and hope that the coming year will be the best ever. Harold will be 90 years old March 29, 1996 and says he is still kicking, but not raising much dust! Love his sense of humor. (House of Antoine)

Ruby Chase, Nanaimo, B.C., who now lives with her daughter and son in law Penny and Al Spidel, is an accomplished world traveler. She was hoping we would take the Alaskan Cruise last summer, but it didn't work out. We were hoping, too. Anyway, her last Alaskan trip was on the New Maasdan (sp?) about a year ago. She says it was just gorgeous and was her 21st cruise trip. Ruby reports her brother Lorne Lobsinger and wife Elly are doing fine and spent some time this year in Reno, NV. (House of George)

Dr. Ted Franklin, Bryan, TX., was in Braman, OK., a few months ago and we tried to make connections, but it didn't work out due to busy schedules. Ted is a descendant of Paul Lobsinger, one of the sons of Count Joseph Lobsinger of the Canadian branch. He was exploring the haunts of Paul Lobsinger, who moved to Braman just after the great land run of 1893, where he was a telegraph operator for the Santa Fe railroad at the time. Ted was trying to find the old depot building where Paul worked, but it has either been torn down or moved.

Ted's son Dr. Joe Franklin and his family are now living in Edmond, OK., while Joe serves his residency in Emergency Medicine in Oklahoma City. (House of Paul)

Irene Lobsinger, Brantford, ON., notified us that her mother, Ellen Elizabeth (Hill), wife of Linus Lobsinger, passed away March 3, 1993. We have fixed the records. We are sending her a GEDCOM file of the family tree so her daughter Lauri can check it out. Lauri is a senior in college. (House of Louis)

Beverly Miller, Lakewood, CA., sent us a very interesting letter on her travels between children from Texas to Michigan during the past fall. Trouble is, we don't have any of her kids' spouses on the data base yet, let alone any of the 14 grandkids, the latest of which is Katie Lynn born Sept 30, 1995 to one of her daughters. Bring us up to date, Bev - we're about 14 kids and several spouses behind the times!

Bev also reports that her aunt Alice Stoike recently celebrated her 80th birthday, and another aunt, Bea Smith, passed away on September 13, 1995. (House of Joseph Carl)

Irene and James Nicholson, Kitchener, ON., dropped us a note to say she didn't get the last issue. So we mailed her a copy about the end of December. Hope that one got there. She also sent us a new address for Carol Anne Shoesmith and Carl White, which we have repaired (House of Louis).

Nadine and Leo Lobsinger of Belleville, IL send Christmas greetings to everyone and a recent photo as well, which we have reprinted here . (House of Michel)

Nadine and Leo Lobsinger

Sandy Frensch and family wishes us all a great holiday and new year. (House of Peter)

Rita McDonnell, Chilliwack, B.C. sends Christmas greetings and best wishes. She's sister of Loren Lobsinger of Maple Ridge, and Ruby Chase of Nanaimo, and Marie DeBartolome. (House of George)

The Byron Lobsinger family of Lake Worth, FL., sent a phot card for Christmas, so it's reprinted here, too. Chris is expecting another child this summer, and they are all very excited about that. Byron is an employee of UPS and seems to work all the time. That must be worse than running a newspaper. (House of Peter)

BYRON LOUIS Lobsinger family: Steven, Chris, Byron, and Shawn

Byron's brother (and mine) John Lobsinger and his wife Carol, of Lake Worth, FL., say hello to everyone. (House of Peter)

Byron's other brother (and mine) Michael Lobsinger and wife Kem of Port Saint Lucie, FL., sent us a photo of their two kids, Kari and Jessica. It's in here too. (House of Peter)

Jessica and Kari Lobsinger

Margaret Ann Lobsinger of Lake Worth, FL., dropped us a note over the holidays as well. Margaret is Byron's aunt (and mine). Seems like all the Florida letters and cards piled up in the same corner of the box. (House of Peter)

Evelyn Lobsinger, Stratford, ON., (not the one who is missing) sent us a new address for her son Mike Lobsinger, so we have that fixed on the mailing list. (House of Louis)

Susan Lobsinger, St. Catharines, ON., wrote us shortly after the last newsletter went out to inquire about injuries to any of the family due to the Oklahoma City bombing. Fortunately, all are fine. We thank her collectively, for the Mass intention card she also sent.

The suspect, however, was reportedly sighted in Newkirk the night before the bombing, where he is supposed to have stopped at our local convenience store for snacks, gas, and conversation. The place was crawling with FBI agents afterward. I'm not real convinced it was the same guy, mostly because every convenience store clerk along 300 miles of road claimed to have seen him that night.

A note from Susan's daughter Theresa Lobsinger asked for our e-mail address in the same letter. We sent it, and a couple of days ago, we got our first e-mail letter from her. Congratulations. The Internet is a lot of fun... and postage between USA and Canada is a lot cheaper that way!

Last October, we received a letter from W.D. Kelly of Bakersfield, CA., who was trying to locate information on a William Joseph Lobsinger.
William Joseph Lobsinger was the name of his wife's natural father, whom she had never met. His original birth certificate showed an address in Grand Forks, MN., Her mother's name was Dorothy Louise Comstock. They were apparently married sometime in 1940 and divorced about 1944 or 45.

Dorothy Comstock subsequently married Howard Eli Finch, and it appears that Lobsinger relinquished his paternal rights as Finch adopted Dorothy in April 1949.

This William Joseph Lobsinger was in the Army Air Corps in 1940. He may have been red-headed, and was reportedly in St. Cloud, MN., about 1985 or so.

I have written back to Mr. Kelly with my own opinion about who this guy (now deceased, I believe) is, but if anyone out there knows anything else about him, please let me know so I can relay the information to them.

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