Shannon Philpott-Sanders

Writing, Reflecting, Teaching

Collinsville’s ‘Worker Bee’ Recognized

Published in the 5/27/10 issue of the Suburban Journals/Collinsville Herald

Collinsville’s ‘worker bee’ recognized
‘It’s my way to give back,” she says

Lois Metzger was a Collinsville High School Kahok cheerleader in 1955. Since then, she has been cheering for her hometown as an avid volunteer, booster and supporter.

Metzger, 73, was recently recognized by the Collinsville Junior Service Club for 50 years of active membership in the organization. “It’s a way to give back and make people aware that Collinsville is a good place to live,” Metzger said.

The Junior Service Club is a community service organization focused on helping area residents and children in need. The club sponsors local fundraisers for student scholarships, food baskets and senior citizens, while also working to raise awareness of Collinsville’s history and community activities.

It was founded in December 1933. For a good portion of that, Metzger has been a key organizer of events and a familiar face throughout the community, according to club member Linda Bohnenstiehl.

“She is one of Collinsville’s best ambassadors, mascots – someone who represents Collinsville in its very best light,” Bohnenstiehl said.

Metzger’s volunteer efforts have spanned from working with Collinsville Progress and the Historic Preservation Commission to registering landmarks, restoring the D.D. Collins House on Main Street and working with the Friends of the Collinsville Museum and Library as a town historian.

“All of these involvements are not work for Lois,” Bohnenstiehl said. “It is just Lois allowing herself to be who she is, using her talents. She is someone who makes our community a better place in her own beautifully humble, well-presented and well-researched way.”

This community is part of Metzger’s being, she said. It’s where she attended her first day of school at Jefferson Elementary; where she met her husband, William Metzger; where she raised three children; where she taught elementary school; and where she continues to cheer on her 10 grandchildren at sporting events and recitals.

“We’re blessed that we’ve been here with our children and grandchildren,” Metzger said. “We haven’t slowed down.”

Although she is no longer a Kahok cheerleader, her loyalty to the city and school teams still has some pep. As a season ticket holder, Metzger and her husband can be seen on the sidelines at most high school basketball games. The team recognized her at Senior Night in 2009.

“It’s my way to give back,” Metzger said. “The friendships developed over time have been a great thing – I feel so blessed to have worked with such giving and talented people.”

Metzger’s willingness to share her talents has inspired others to be active members of the community, according to Bohnenstiehl.

“Lois is a worker bee,” Bohnenstiehl said. “She is not looking for power or the limelight.”

– Shannon Philpott

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June 23, 2010 - Posted by | Feature Stories, Newspaper Writing, Sample Work | , , , , ,

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