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Honoring D-Day: 70 Years Ago Today

On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 Allied troops, 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft engaged with Nazi Germany on the heavily fortified beaches of Normandy, France.  By the end of the day, the Allies had gained a foot-hold, allowing 100,000 soldiers to begin moving across Europe to defeat Adolf Hitler’s army.  But the price was high.  More than 9,000 Allied soldiers were killed or wounded.  The video below, courtesy of USAA, tells the story of that day with dramatic film footage and poignant first-person accounts.


Award-Winning Ecumen Communities Recognized at May Leadership Conference

Twenty-three Ecumen sites with outstanding achievements in 2013 were recognized at a presentation ceremony at the Leadership Conference held on May 6 in Brooklyn Center, Minn. Key areas of recognition were customer satisfaction, job satisfaction and stewardship. Shelley Kendrick, Vice President of Operations <img>


On National Nurses Day: Honoring Anne Diekmann, Exemplary Ecumen Nurse

Anne Diekmann, Director of Nursing, Ecumen of Litchfield

Anne is one of Ecumen’s approximately 2,800 nurses and nursing assistants. Today we honor them — and all nurses — for the care they give so selflessly and the positive difference they make in people’s lives every day. Read more about why Anne chose working in senior care over a hospital.


Bertha Smith, First Black Teacher in Minneapolis School District, Remembered as Pioneer and Role Model

Bertha Smith, the first black teacher in the Minneapolis School District, is being remembered by local leaders as an extraordinary educator, tireless volunteer and dedicated community advocate. Smith, a resident at Ecumen Prairie Lodge, passed away on Friday, April 18, at the age of 94. Our condolences to Bertha's family, friends and all those who were influenced by her.


Young Man's 89-Year-Old Prom Date Gets a Standing Ovation

Austin Dennison didn't ask his high school sweetheart to prom. Nor did he ask a celebrity via Twitter. Austin, a "kind of fellow who looks like he just stepped out of central casting," asked his 89-year-old great grandmother to his senior prom. And she said yes. You can read the full story in this Fox News Article: "Teenager Takes His Great-Grandmother to Prom."


Honor: 7 Teachings on a Life Well-Lived from Senator Nancy Brataas and Her Daughter Anne

Anne Brataas is the daughter of pioneering Minnesota State Senator and leader Nancy Brataas.  Sen. Brataas, who was the first female Minnesota state legislator elected in her own right, died last week in hospice care.  For a wonderful example of "honor," we share with you her daughter's tribute entitled:  As she died, Sen. Nancy Brataas posed a final question: 'Unconventional?' that was published today at


Joe Gomer, Minnesota's Last Tuskegee Airman and Ecumen Lakeshore Resident, Dies at 93

Our country has lost a hero, Congressional Gold Medal recipient and one of a small group of remaining Tuskegee Airmen. Joe Gomer passed away at Ecumen Lakeshore in Duluth, Minn., on Thursday, October 10. Our thoughts and condolences go out to his family, friends and all those he inspired. We are honored to have known and cared for Joe Gomer.