WELCOME HOME VETERANS (WHV) President Kim Bowen (right) presented a plaque in recognition of Irene Hosking at Sheila’s Styling Salon in Westown on Wednesday, Jan. 8. In November, WHV hosted its first annual Wine & Cheese event, held in Bancroft at the former Durand elementary school that is going to be converted into a 34-bed housing facility for veterans in need of housing – short term, long term or transitional. Hosking was originally going to be honored at the Wine & Cheese event, but had been unable to attend, so Bowen decided to surprise her Wednesday afternoon, following Hosking’s hair appointment. Bowen was moved to honor Hosking’s amazing commitment to veterans.
At 101, Hosking is an area icon. She graduated from a Wisconsin high school in 1936 and Milwaukee Passavant Hospital of Nursing in 1940, prior to entering into service in the Army Nurse Corp. in 1942. Eventually she married a G.I., remaining in the Army until 1946 and eventually becoming employed with the Shiawassee County Hospital – eventually the Norton Street Pleasant View facility.
Hosking has served veterans in many areas, including becoming the first female commander at the Corunna VFW #4005 in 1995. She continues to serve even today.
During the presentation, Hosking mentioned that she was soon heading out, attended by family, to go to her brother’s funeral near the Wisconsin/Michigan border in the far north. She shared that she is the oldest of five siblings, though only herself and her sister, the youngest, now remain. Hosking clearly recalled many fond memories of growing up in the Hurley, WI area, across the river from Ironwood. She is grateful for her experiences, sharing that all of it “made her who she is today.”
Bowen, representing WHV, continues in her effort to bring awareness to the continued need for veterans housing and is working tirelessly, along with board members, to see the facility come to fruition.
(Independent Photo/Karen Mead-Elford)