Replica School Purchased for Charter School-Benefits Relay

Photo left:Gus Debeaussaert, builder of stone school replica joins Jan Waltz, buyer of the replica.

Relay for Life Team “St. Helen Steppers” held a 1960’s themed fundraiser and dance at Birch Pointe Golf Club on June 2nd. Amongst the activities attendees enjoyed all you can eat pizza and salad, an auction, a guessing game contest in which a toilet bowl was filled with golf balls, a bake sale, a best 60’s outfit, and a 50/50 drawing.

Amongst the auction items was a replica model of the old stone school that has been in St. Helen since the 1930’s. The model was built by Gus Debeaussaert of Roscommon.

Gus noted that he relied on input from Joseph Roush who attended the school as a child.

The current building now has an addition that did not exist then and the stairs in the back are gone. The replica represents the original design which Joe Roush stated was “near perfect”. Gus explained that there were only 2 photos found of the original building so there was some guess work to the relic.

The opening bid for the model of the school was set at $300. There were no bids made therefore it was announced that the model would be displayed around town and raffled off. Shortly thereafter it was announced that St. Helen resident Jan Waltz had agreed to purchase the replica for $300 and that she would be donating it to the Charlton Heston Academy. Joe Roush stated that Jan’s actions created a link between the original wood school, the stone school, the former St. Helen Elementary School, and now the charter school. When asked why she decided to make such a generous donation Jan stated “I’m so excited about the Academy. Everyone has worked so hard”.

Photo Left to right-Laurie Rieli, Pete Rieli, Kathy Jernigan, Paul Talagrand, Nancy Henry, Joan Elton, Shirley Sass, Billie Scripter, Dale Scripter, and (front) Mona Lahar were dressed for the 1960’s themed event.

Reprinted with permission of The Roscommon County Weekly June 8, 2012 issue