Bell Tower Memorial Programs & Events

Veterans in the Classroom

WWII Veterans Al Exner and Jerry Stern spoke to history classes at Pewaukee High School in February, 2019.

Veterans Oral History Project Award Ceremony & Luncheon - 2018

On Sunday, May 20, 2018, The Bell Tower Memorial (BTM) and St. John's Northwestern Military Academy (SJNMA) hosted a Veterans ceremony and luncheon at SJNMA, honoring the completion of their third Veterans Oral History Project (VOHP) and it's participants.


Sponsored in part by Habush Habush & Rottier, students, Veterans, their families, and members of the community enjoyed lunch and the inspirational words of our guest speaker, Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow, and our keynote speaker, Petty Officer First Class Colin Dewey, USN. Veterans and students received award acknowledgments for their work on the project.


Veteran Participants:

Jack Eleyet, Air Force, Korea; Jo Helgeson, Army, Korea; John Jadel, Army, Korea; John Miller, Navy, Korea; Charlie Payne, Army, WWII; Alvin Rohde, Army, Korea; Ralph Simoneau, Marines, WWII; Robert Smith, Marines, Korea; Jerry Stern, Navy, WWII


Student Participants:

Chloe Brossman, Andrew DeMaster, Nikolas Denzien, Jake Gonzalez, Katherine Hearden, Carolyn Miller, Amaya Seidl, Stevie Ward, Emily Willis


Check out our video and photo gallery!

Veterans Reunion

The Bell Tower Memorial (BTM) held a reunion for the Veterans interviewed for the 2016, 2017 & 2018 Veterans Oral History Project. Kirkland Crossings in Pewaukee hosted the event on August 17, 2018.


Veteran Attendees:

Back row: Al Hansen, Army, WWII; Ralph Simoneau, Marine, WWII; Bob Smith, Navy/Marine, Korea; Fritz Krause, Army Air Corp, WWII; Wayne Iverson, Navy, WWII; John Miller, Navy, Korea

Front row: John Bosch, Army, WWII; John Eskau, Navy, Korea; Al Exner, Navy, WWII; Jo Helgeson, Army, Korea; Jerry Stern, Navy, WWII

To see photos and video from additional events, please visit our Gallery!

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Veterans In The Classroom

On Friday, January 3, 2020, Korean War Veteran Walter Hogan spoke at Pewaukee High School to teacher Sharon Straub's history class about his time in Korea. Hogan served in the army as a squad leader and was shot on October 24, 1952 during the Battle of Chorwon Valley. He spent three days in a MASH unit before being shipped to Yokohama, Japan. He ended up at Walter Reed hospital in Washington D.C. The injuries he sustained caused him to lose his leg, but that didn't stop him from living his life, eventually becoming a (now past) National Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.


To hear more of Walter Hogan's story, stay tuned for our Veterans Oral History Project coming in Spring of 2020.

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Veterans Oral History Project Award Ceremony & Luncheon - 2019

On Sunday, May 19, 2019, The Bell Tower Memorial (BTM) and St. John's Northwestern Military Academy (SJNMA) hosted their fourth annual Award Ceremony and Luncheon at SJNMA, honoring the completion of their Veterans Oral History Project (VOHP) and it's participants.

Sponsored by Habush Habush & Rottier, WaterStone Bank, Circle Electric, Vice Admiral Dirk and Terry Debbink, USNR (ret.), and John Fleckenstein to Honor Veteran Jerry Stern, students, Veterans, their families, and members of the community enjoyed lunch and the inspirational words of our guest speaker, Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow. Veterans and students received award acknowledgments for their work on the project.

Veteran Participants:

Earl Davison, Marines, Korea; Arnold Fuerstenberg, Army, WWII; Forrest Gunderson, Army Air Corps, WWII; Thomas Heaton, Navy, WWII; Bill Kosky, Navy, WWII; Michael Krebs, Navy, Vietnam; Don Peterson, Army, Korea; Norm Poberezny, Merchant Marines/Coast Guard, WWII; Bill Rheingans, Air Force, Vietnam/Iraqi Freedom; Eugene Schulz, Army, WWII; William Vaitl, Army, Cold War; Bob Winchell, Army Air Corps, WWII

Student Participants:

Alan Cameron, Andrew Drazy, James Homann, Ellie Kaczkowski, Douglas Kirkhofer, Hailey Kiser, Zoe Klett, Robert Kubiak III, Alyssa Labs, Sara Laszkiewicz, Elisabeth Prudlo, William Tuttle


Check out our video and photo gallery!

Veterans Reunion 2019

The Bell Tower Memorial (BTM) held a reunion for the Veterans interviewed for the 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019 Veterans Oral History Project. Kirkland Crossings in Pewaukee hosted the event on August 15, 2019.


Veteran Attendees:

Don Peterson, Army; John Miller, Navy; Forrest Gunderson, Army Air Corps; Marge Behlen, Army; Tom Heaton, Navy; Earl Davison, Marine; Eugene Schulz, Army; Bill Vaitl, Army; Wayne Iverson, Navy; Bill Kosky, Navy; John Bosch, Army; Mike Weigl, Army; Jerry Stern, Navy; Al Exner, Navy; John Eskau, Navy; Phil Baird, Navy

Veterans Oral History Project - 2021

In 2021, the Bell Tower Memorial featured 11 Veterans from WWII, the Korean War, Vietnam, and the Cold War along with 11 students from Pewaukee, Waukesha South and Lake Country Lutheran High Schools.

Veteran Participants:

Howard Hadley, Air Force, Vietnam; Dean Larsen, Navy, Korean War Era; Dale Stark, Air Force, Korea; Lee Murry, Army, Korea; Walter Hogan, Army, Korea; Terry Inda, Navy, WWII; Richard Kuenn, Air Force, Korean War Era; Ron Sowinski, Navy, Cold War; Craig Arellano, Air Force, Vietnam War Era; Rollie Crandall, Navy, Vietnam; John Arnold, Army, Vietnam War Era

Student Participants:
Drew Sonderman, Erin Esser, Tony Carrillo, Anna Brandl, Roman Olvera-Jeramillo, Anika Woelffer, Alyssa Myers, Lily Swanson, Tiara Tran, Taylor Casey, and Nick Seidl


Check out our videos!