Lake Life

& Such

Boy Scout Troop #398 meets at the Cedar Creek Bible Church from 7-8:30 p.m. each Tuesday. For more information, call (903) 498-5725 or (903) 498-3830.
Cedar Creek Art Society meets from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. the last Thursday of each month at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. A $3 donation per artist is asked.
Cedar Creek Domino Club meets each week on Wednesday and Thursday mornings and Saturday afternoons at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. For more info, call (903) 498-4351.
Cedar Creek NAR-ANON meets at 8 p.m. on Tuesday at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points.
Cedar Creek Narcotics Anonymous meets at 8 p.m., Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points.
Cedar Creek 49ers Club meets from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. every Thursday for fellowship and dancing. The club is located off Arnold Hill Road in Seven Points. A donation $5 per person is asked.
Cedar Creek Lake Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Wednesday at Lakeridge RV Park in Gun Barrel City (across from D.Q.), except the second week of the month, when the club meets Thursday in conjunction with the area chamber of commerce luncheon.
Cedar Creek Optimist Club meets every Tuesday at noon at the Dairy Queen in Seven Points. For more information please call Danny Hampel at (903) 778-4508.
Cedar Creek Republican Club meets every fourth Thursday. For more information call (903) 887-4867.
Cedar Creek Rotary Club meets at noon each Friday at Vetoni’s Italian Restaurant. For more information, call Dee Ann Owens at (903) 340-2415.
Cub Scout Pack #333 meets at the First United Methodist Church of Mabank the second and fourth Monday at 7 p.m. For information, call Mary Harris at (903) 451-5280 or Tonya Capley at (903) 498-4725.
Girl Scout Troop #112 meets at the First United Methodist Church in Mabank the second and fourth Monday at 7 p.m. For more info, call GeriLeigh Stotts at (469) 323-7943 or Malisa Bilberry at (903) 340-7451, or email
Disabled American Veterans Chapter 101 meets the second Monday of each month at the Senior Citizens Center on Hwy. 31 in Athens.
Friendship Club meets at 1:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month at the Tri-County Resource Center. For more information, call Janie Ivey at (903) 887-4666.
Girl Scout Troop 2667 meets every Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Aley United Methodist Church. For more information, please call Suzann Smith at (903) 887-3889.
Gun Barrel Quilter’s Guild meets from 10 a.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. For more information, please call (903) 451-4221.
Kaufman County Republican Women’s Club meets the third Saturday of each month at the Farm Bureau Insurance Company, located at 2477 N. Hwy. 34 in Kaufman. For more info, call (972) 287-1239 or (903) 880-6770.
Kemp Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Tuesday at the Nutrition Center in Kemp. For more information, please call Dr. Jim Collinsworth at (903) 887-7486.
Lake Area Council of the Blind meets at 6 p.m. on the second Saturday of the month at West Athens Baptist Church.
Lake Area Democrats Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month at Dairy Queen in Seven Points. Everyone is welcome. Email for more information.
Mabank/Cedar Creek Area Lions Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. Call (903) 887-5252 for info.
Mabank Garden Club meets at 2:45 p.m. at the Tri-County Library on the third Tuesday of every month (different times in May and December).
Oak Harbor/Tanglewood Crime Watch meets at 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month at the R.T. Beamguard Community Center in Oak Harbor.
RootSeekers meet at 7 p.m. on the third Monday of the month in the Tri-County Library in downtown Mabank. The public is welcome to attend.
Southeast Kaufman County Senior Citizens Center Board of Directors meets at 1 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month at the center, located at 300 N. Dallas Street in Kemp. For more info, call (903) 498-2140.
SUICIDE SURVIVORS GROUP for those grieving the loss of someone by suicide, meets every Monday at 6:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Mabank.
TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meet at 6 p.m. each Monday at the First Baptist Church of Mabank. Contact Gaye Ward at (903) 887-5913 for more info.
TVCC Singles meet at 7 p.m. each Monday in the Nutrition Center at TVCC, located off Park Street near the Athens Country Club. This is a support group for singles of all ages and is supported by TVCC. For more info, call Hilda Anding at (903) 489-2259.




Answering The Call
Eustace retiree serves as a PA on Ike-ravaged Texas coastline
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

EUSTACE–Some folks find so much meaning and sense of purpose in their work that when they retire they just keep on doing what they love to do. Ed Zwanziger, 72, is one of those folks.
He retired after 34 years of service with the U.S. Air Force, first as a medic and then a Physician Assistant (PA), and continues seeing patients at least once a week with Primary Care Associates (PCA) in Gun Barrel City.
“I fill in when someone is out, which is every Wednesday at least,” he said.
All those years of experience are put to good use, especially when working with young patients who may need to be put at ease. He can get down right silly in order to win the trust of his patients, even wearing a clown’s nose and using the assistance a stuffed toy orangutan named “Huggy.”
(Soon after the PA educational program was introduced in 1969, the military came on board, and Zwanziger was one of the first medics to enroll in the program in 1974, the same year he married his wife Beverly. Today, a PA program is equal to that of a master’s degree with some advanced forms earning a PhD, he said.)
Though working part-time with PCA, Dr. Z, as he is often called, is also one of those summoned when medical staff is needed to serve those hardest hit by hurricanes.
“It’s what I did in the military, that and training others to respond to disasters,” he said.
He served evacuees of Katrina and Rita in shelters in Tyler and most recently completed an exhaustive 10-day stint 50 miles west of Galveston following Hurricane Ike.
Medical personnel, including PAs, rotate in and out of disaster sites to volunteer to help those in need. So, when Zwanziger heard the need for PAs in Bridge City, he packed up and drove the 240 miles “with the intent of doing what I could for as long as I could,” he said.
However, since he wasn’t part of a disaster management team, he searched for a group to join. He found a faith-based team called Active Community Team Services (ACTS), made up of high school and college students from across the country.
ACTS set up its base of operation in a gymnasium at Bridge High School.
Victims who were able to get there were examined, treated and given prescriptions. Then he would make home visits with Orange County residents who weren’t able to make it into the high school. ACTS members had been checking on them and coordinated the home visits.
“We would go out doing house calls – or ‘yard calls,’ because some of them couldn’t get into their houses – and seeing what medication they might need,” Zwanziger explained. “I would provide refills for maintenance medicines such as for high blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid and the like, and they would get a 30-day supply.
“Pharmacies were out of commission,” he added. “These people had lost their medicine and couldn’t get a refill because their doctor was not there anymore. Some of these clinics were not going to be reopened for two to three months.”
During these home visits, he often teamed with Canadian-based psychologist Jeanne LeBlanc, who assessed emotional and psychological needs.
“It was a dynamite team, working up to 14 hours a day, returning to the school gymnasium at night, planning the following day and getting up and doing it all over again,” Zwanziger said.
You’d think after a lifetime of responding to disaster sites, it would become old hat, or the comparison with Vietnam War casualties would make the job easier, but it really doesn’t, he said.
“When dealing with the emotional status of victims, it just never gets easier. It’s why it’s called a disaster,” Zwanziger said.
He retells of one resident who stopped by the school for a prescription, and told him he had to hurry, because today they were bringing in a bulldozer to level his house.
“It was very heart-wrenching to try to imagine that they had lost literally everything they had. Everything,” Zwanziger said.
Yet, it was the same family who stepped in to assist Zwanziger and his team.
The man was just so grateful for the shower, hot meal and a place to sleep under the meal tent that he started helping the teams.
“Here he was, didn’t have anything, and he’s volunteering his time,” Zwanziger recounted. Later, he saw the man dropping money into the donation pot.
“Tell me if that’s not an awesome thing?” Zwanziger asked.
After 10 days, Zwanziger had to head back to fulfill his commitment to his clinic in Gun Barrel City.
On the last day, he was asked if he could continue his work in Galveston, but he had to decline so he could return to the clinic, where Dr. Ben Embry had given him the time off to do what he could.
“I’d like to feel I gave them 110 percent while I was there,” he said.
Zwanziger continues to keep in touch with his ACTS team by helping them develop a medical operating procedure.
He also hopes, one day soon, all states will consider allowing their licensed PAs to respond to disasters in other states.
Zwanziger was frustrated during Hurricane Andrew when laws prevented him from providing medical care to Louisiana victims. Instead, he and his wife Beverly handed out ice water.
Closer to home, Zwanziger also uses his medical expertise as a volunteer talking to teens about the benefits of sexual abstinence and the consequences of sexually transmitted diseases.
He participates in a speakers’ bureau, “Worth The Wait,” conducting a program at Kemp ISD every two years. He is also on call when a judge orders someone to go through the program.
“I use graphic photographs and talk in direct and clear language with them,” he said, noting one in five abortions involves terminating a teenage pregnancy.
Judging from parent feedback, he says the program is more successful than he realized.
Another student program he feels has been successful is one called “Shattered Dreams,” where a car collision due to drunk driving is simulated for high school students, taking place the night of the prom.
“I’m really good at making good-looking people look bad,” he said of his artistry with liquid latex, wax, simulated blood and make-up to create the illusion of burns, cuts and bruises, called moulage.
“We once made up 300 people in a simulated disaster in a hour and half,” he said. The moulage effects helped train disaster responders in Austin.
When Zwanziger is not volunteering his expertise, this Eustace resident enjoys working with his hands on crafts for the disadvantaged.
As part of Hobby Crafters of Dallas, he and Beverly craft wooden trucks and cars, and stuff dolls to be given away to children in tough situations, especially at Christmas time.
He also enjoys cooking.
If all this activity seems applicable to someone much younger than this “retired” couple, who moved to Cedar Creek Lake in 1994, it might be helpful to know that the translation of their German last name is “Twenty-ish.”
That explains a lot. In their case, perhaps youth is not wasted on the young, or young at heart.

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