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Gorell family donates $2,000 to Elk Mound library and community center

By LeAnn R. Ralph

ELK MOUND —  The family of Josie Gorell has donated $2,000 toward the library and community center project in Elk Mound.

Andy Peterson, village president, reported on the donation from Charles and Lori Gorell at the Elk Mound Village Board’s April 3 meeting.

The village board has approved buying the old beauty shop and Laundromat building in Elk Mound for $10,000 with the understanding that the Elk Mound Community Center committee will raise money to reimburse the village.

When the library has moved from the village hall to the new location, a plaque will be installed noting the donation in Josie’s memory, Peterson said.

Josie Gorell, age 11, was a student in the Elk Mound school district who died September 21, 2012, after battling a rare brain tumor for most of her life.

Josie was diagnosed when she was 22 months old with a cancerous tumor between her optic nerves that left her visually impaired.

Throughout her life, Josie endured chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Surgery was necessary in December of 2011 and left Josie with right-side weakness.

Shortly after Christmas of 2011, the Gorell family learned that the remainder of Josie’s tumor had changed to Stage 4.

In a conversation after the April 3 village board meeting had adjourned, Peterson said that the owner of the Laundromat building would be signing the deed two days later on Friday.

The community center committee plans to send out letters soliciting donations for the project, and the committee also is working on grant applications, he said.

The library in Elk Mound, which is currently operating out of the Elk Mound Village Hall, is a satellite facility of the Menomonie Public Library.

The former Laundromat building will house the library as well as a community center.

The village hall library is attracting more patrons every week, Peterson said.

Once the Laundromat building is remodeled, the library will include a small circulating collection of materials, computers and programming for both children and adults.

Patrons of the Elk Mound library can order materials from Menomonie or from any library in the state.

A courier delivers the materials to Elk Mound from the Menomonie Public Library.