Rutherford County Volunteers of Year to be honored by Governor


Two Rutherford County volunteers will be honored at the Governor’s Tennessee Stars Awards in March.  The program honors one adult volunteer and one youth volunteer from each county in the state.  This year’s Rutherford county honorees are Heinz Kokemueller and Ella Edge.

heinzHeinz has been volunteering at the Alvin C. York VA Medical Center since 2001 and has logged more than 5,500 volunteer hours. Heinz is a dedicated volunteer who drives for their on-site shuttle service two days a week. He provides rides for Veterans and their families throughout the Medical Center Campus to and from the parking lots and various buildings on campus. Heinz has a positive, helpful attitude and greets everyone with a smile! Staff say that he is a valuable member of the VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System volunteer team. Heinz is an Army Veteran serving 2 years as a Chief Radio Operator in the Korean War, stationed at Osan Air Force Base in South Korea.

Ella is an 12 year old student at Central Magnet school. Last year, while attending McFadden Elementary, her school had a Vendors Fair and she set up face painting at the end of her father’s booth. Only asking for donations for the Lions Club, she painted faces by herself for over four hours collecting $60. The money she raised for the Lions Club will help to pay for glasses for those in need.

 Ella is a committed member of the Murfreesboro Lions club. She is always first to volunteer to help: she shows up to sell pecans at Kroger’s, works in the dining room during the Pancake Breakfast and always takes time to count glasses that are donated. At Central she is on the principals list and is involved in Science Olympiad and is becoming an avid rock climber. She also volunteers her time outside of Lions club. Her last year at McFadden she was also the treasurer for the Elementary Honors Society where they helped Boulevard Terrace Nursing Home with their gardens. As a thank you to McFadden Elementary she, along with others, helped clean up the school’s garden as well.

Heinz and Ella were selected from a pool of 52 outstanding volunteers who were recognized in Volunteer Rutherford’s Volunteer of the Week program throughout 2017.  The program, sponsored by Guaranty Trust Company, is open to nominations from all Volunteer Rutherford registered agencies.