Jefferson Award Winner: Bill Arnsdorf - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Jefferson Award Winner: Bill Arnsdorf


Eau Claire (WQOW)- Angels are hovering much closer than you may think. Bill Arnsdorf helps to head of a team of angels who've quietly been doing good in the community for 10 years. 

Along Graham Avenue sits a beautiful, but modest building. The kind you might pass day after day and never really take note of. Etched in eau Claire's history The Masonic Temple houses angels, who you'll find inside, hard at work. In the belly of the building is where local Masons cook up solutions to some of the most pressing problems.

"The counselor said, we've got a boy here who is having trouble walking and so we stopped and asked him what the problem was. His shoes were 3 sizes too small. And he didn't have any clothes and he's just in terrible shape," says Bill Arnsdorf, recalling a conversation he had with a local school counselor.  "And so we said you get what you need for him and let us know what it is. She said you can't believe the look on that kid's face when he opened those packages up, when that clothing came."

The Angel Fund works closely with counselors, nurses, social workers and principals in area school districts to find out where the biggest need is then, the Masons get to work.

"He's got a heart of gold and when he tells a story about some kid that needs something you can almost see his eyes welling up a little bit," says Greg O'Reilly who works with Bill on the fund and nominated him for a Jefferson Award. "He'll get a phone call in the morning and by the afternoon he can be walking into the counselor's office and handing them a check for what they request."

It was 10 years ago that Bill got the idea to bring the Angel Fund to Eau Claire. He says some of the stories he's heard are hard to forget. "One counselor called and she needed some money to go buy some things for three little kids. I said sure get whatever you need. She called me a couple days later then and said you can't believe what those kids did. The little boy said 'I got socks without holes in them!' and the little girl said, 'I have underpants that fit!". Bill says, with tears in his eyes, it's stories like these that keep him going.

Over the past decade the Angel Fund has spent thousands of dollars to help over 500 children. 

You can donate to the Eau Claire Area Masonic Angel Fund at PO Box 1405 Eau Claire, WI 54702. 

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