Reunion for Nachusa Lutheran Home Residents

Twenty-five former residents of Nachusa Lutheran Home, their families, and former staff gathered this fall for an informal reunion and tour of the campus that now houses a variety of LSSI's children's programs.

The reunion grew out of a Facebook page for people who had lived at Nachusa Lutheran Home in the 1960s. People from as far as California, Arkansas, and Tennessee traveled to Nachusa to reminisce and tour the current-day campus.

Attendees recalled fond memories of lasting friendships and mentors. "There was a bond that we all formed from being here," recalled Kathy Loitra.

One mentor included former maintenance manager Gilbert DeWitt, 97, who attended the reunion and enjoyed visiting with the former residents, all of whom he remembered. "I guess I substituted as a parent for them," he said. "It's something that I'll never forget."

Gary Oberg lived at Nachusa during the 1960s. Later, he served in the U.S. Navy for 22 years. He recalled the help and support he received from the home's administrator in finding an apartment and securing a job at age 17. "What I took away from here was a sense of family," Oberg said.