Sponsors for The Golden Apple

Byron Cox American Legion Post #72 - Veterans and family members committed to sustaining the concept of Americanism and pride in our country throughout our community while ensuring we as a nation never forget the price paid by so many to ensure our freedom and the freedom of all Americans now and in the future.  

Franciscan Health Crawfordsville and Franciscan Physician Network  - Franciscan Health Crawfordsville has evolved and grown to provide expert care close to home, including 24/7 emergency care, inpatient and outpatient services, and the Marie Canine Cancer Center. 

Hoosier Heartland State Bank - A bank you can believe in. A neighbor you know. Offices in Crawfordsville, Ladoga, Linden, New Ross and Roachdale.

Dr. Dane G. Mishler and Dr. Janet L. Rucker - A dental practice located in Crawfordsville, Indiana, that is devoted to restoring and enhancing the natural beauty of your smile.

Montgomery County Medical Society - The Montgomery County Medical Society was formed in the 1950’s to allow local physicians to work together to support each other and the community they serve. It also allows the physicians to interact with the Indiana State Medical Association.

Davis-Morrison Realty - A real estate firm established over 50 years ago, familiar with residential commercial, farm, and business needs.



Active Podiatry

Arni’s Restaurant

B&L Engineering

Crawfordsville Audiology

Crawfordsville Service Master

Etter Ford

Frodge’s Inc.

Drs. Mark and Barbara Heskes - Gentle Family Footcare

Edward D. Jones, Scott Gambrel

Keystone Building Services, Gary Isenberg

L&M Commodities

Suanne Milligan, Attorney-at-Law

Nucor Steel

Rasmussen Family Dentistry

Tanner & Servies Insurance

J. M. Thompson Insurance

Tri-County Bank

We thank our generous sponsors, whose donations allow us to apply our funds to patient care.



2017 Golden Apple Celebration

The 2017 Golden Apple Celebration will be held Saturday, April 22, 2017 at Detchon Center, Wabash College. The social hour will begin at 6 pm, followed by a buffet dinner featuring stir fry, prepared by Bon Appétit.

The Golden Apple continues the tradition of Christian Nursing Service, dating back to the early 1970s to honor volunteers for exceptional dedication to the Clinic’s mission of providing health and dental care and to preparing and delivering Meals on Wheels. This year’s recipients are:

Dr. Bryan Welch, DDS and Kristina Welch. Dr. Welch and Kristina have generously volunteered their services to the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic providing free dental services to the uninsured.

The kitchen staff at Franciscan Health Crawfordsville who regularly help assure that healthy meals are available to those who receive Meals on Wheels (MOW) each weekday. 



2016 Golden Apple Celebration

The 2016 Golden Apple Celebration took place on Saturday, April 30, 2016 at Detchon Center, Wabash College. The social hour, featuring appple sangria, began at 6 pm, followed by an Italian buffet dinner from Bon Appetit.

The Golden Apple continues the tradition of Christian Nursing Service, dating back to the early 1970s to honor volunteers for exceptional dedication to the Clinic’s mission of providing health and dental care and to preparing and delivering Meals on Wheels. This year’s recipients are:


  • Jim Sexton, longtime Meals on Wheels driver coordinator
  • Alma Conrad, clinic volunteer
  • Linda Johnson, volunteer clinic interpreter

Additionally, we honored Marge Ross as she steps down from her role as assistant MOW coordinator after 25 years.

A short video, titled “A Culture of Caring,” was presented after dinner. Under the direction of Wabash College media director Adam Phipps and Jim Amidon, Wabash students Austin Myers and Carlos Rios outlined what the Clinic does, and featured stories from our patients, staff, and volunteers.



The 2015 Golden Apple Celebration was held Saturday night at Detchon Center, Wabash College. More than 100 people were in attendance to honor Dr. John Roberts as Volunteer of the Year. Isobel Arvin was awarded a lifetime achievement award for her many contributions to Christian Nursing Service and to Meals on Wheels (MOW).

We have created a site on Flickr where you may see photographs from the evening - https://www.flickr.com/groups/goldenapple2015/

Here are a few photographs from the evening:

Dr. Mary Ludwig and Rebecca LangKim, John and John Roberts with Suzanne SiamasEmily Arvin (granddaughter), Isobel Arvin and Chris Arvin (son)




Montgomery County Free Clinic, Inc. invites you to join us on Saturday, May 2 at 6:00 PM, Detchon Center, Wabash College for the 2015 Golden Apple Celebration. This year, we will honor Isobel Arvin for her many contributions to Meals on Wheels (MOW) and Dr. John Roberts for his work for the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic. For tickets or other information about this event, please click HERE and complete the form.




Bushels of service and loyalty were recognized Saturday [May 3, 2014] when the Montgomery County Free Clinic Inc. celebrated its Golden Apple Awards.

The annual event was held at the Detchon Center on the campus of Wabash College. Individuals in three categories — medical, dental and meal delivery service [Meals on Wheels], which is under the umbrella of the clinic – were recognized and received awards.

The Golden Apple award represents the illustrious history of Christian Nursing Service and of Dr. Mary Ludwig, who presented children with an apple when they visited the CNS clinic. A symbol of health and service, the Golden Apple has been presented to CNS volunteers since the early 1970s. 

Receiving Golden Apples this year were Sue Rickett, Elton and Marge Ross, Sandy Henthorn, Sheila Evans, Susan Dawson and Janet Rucker, D.D.S., and her staff.


Presenter Isobel Arvin, co-coordinator of the Meals on Wheels program, described Rickett as one of the unsung heroines who works behind the scenes to keep the MOW program going. She recruits and trains volunteers to package meals for delivery.

 “Packagers arrive at 9 a.m. and spend two hours getting meals ready for delivery,” Arvin said. “Sue schedules herself to package meals on a regular basis and often substitutes for a volunteer who cannot work. There are times when Sue has packaged meals and a driver fails to show up — so she delivers the route. Upon occasion she has delivered two routes on the same day.”

Marge and Elton Ross have been involved in the MOW program for 20 years. They have been a part of the First United Methodist Church team that delivers meals on a regular basis. Marge Ross also shares program coordination duties with Arvin.

“Many of you know that we live next door to the Rosses for 51 years. In 2002, when I was looking for someone to share my responsibilities for coordinating the program, Marge was my choice,” Arvin said with a smile.

As co-coordinator, Marge Ross enrolls clients, calls the doctor for a diet order, notifies the hospital of the need, contacts Bob Rogers to get them on a route and reports to treasurer Gary Stull,” Arvin said. “Her phone rings many times during the week at any hour of the day … Many of you know that Marge has developed a hearing loss recently, but she still performs her duties with the aid of her CapTel phone and with the aid of her husband, Elton. She has just about trained Elton to sub for her when needed.”

Elton Ross also is the coordinator for the Kiwanis Club. He schedules drivers for the club, delivers for them and often takes Marge along to help him.

Presenter Christine Amidon, a  member of the Montgomery County Free Clinic Board, introduced the recipients in the medical category — Sandy Henthorn and Sheila Evans, both registered nurses.

“A few days after mailing the letter to Sandy to inform her that we planned to honor her as an exceptional clinic volunteer, she left a message on my answering machine. ‘Well, this is just ridiculous, that you would give me the Golden Apple. I mean I would have come to the dinner anyway,’” Amidon said. “That pretty much sums up the type of volunteer that Sandy is: a team player, never desiring of attention for her contributions.”

Henthorn has a wealth of experience as a nurse in medical offices. The clinic’s nurse manager, Michele  Thompson, describes that experience as being invaluable when establishing systems in the new clinic. Henthorn has been involved with CNS since its early days.

“It’s fitting that she receive the Golden Apple award for her many years of compassionate caring for others in the community,” Amidon said.

Evans also has been involved with CNS since its inception in the late 1960s. She made home visits to patients in programs that nurses created to meet needs before home health care officially arrived in the area. She also has an extensive background in office nursing both in the private physician’s offices and the Wabash College health center working with Dr. Keith Baird. 

“Sheila also seemed a natural when Michele and the clinic staff were asked about who was most instrumental in helping Doris and our volunteer health care providers to see patients efficiently, some of whom have waited 10 years or more for access to care,” Amidon said. “Sheila received a Golden Apple back in 1983. She is one of those people who deserves a second time of recognition for having been involved over the course of decades in different capacities.”

Bill Doemel, executive director of the Free Clinic, introduced the final volunteer recipients, Susie Dawson and Janet Rucker, D.D.S., and her team of Marchel French, Heidi Gambrel, Krissy Klewicki, Kim Little, Libby Neibert, Tracy Peterman and Kristy Spivey.

Dawson was honored for her efforts to help create a business plan for the clinic.

“Susie guided us towards a realistic business plan for the clinic,” Doemel said. “We needed to raise $175,000 a year. Susie was confident. She told the rest of the group, we can do this — raise money, build and operate a clinic. She gave us the necessary underpinnings to be able to speak to others about the clinic and convince them that we can do this.”

When organizers applied for and received the grant from the North Central Health Service, the real work began. Every week for the next 18 months Dawson paid bills, handled the financial aspects and reported to the board and the federal government.

“I’m unsure how many hours she spent, all volunteered,” Doemel said. “She and Kelly Taylor from the Montgomery County Community Foundation worked together to manage easily the payments needed to make the building a reality. All the time she continued to say ‘we can do this.’ “

Rucker was recognized for leading the effort to include dental treatment and a dental center for the uninsured at the Free Clinic. With the help of her team, they “scrounged, gathered, cleaned, organized, begged, supported, laughed, smiled, encouraged and created the current clinic,” Doemel added.

“Janet is a natural leader,” he said. “Fortunately for Montgomery County Free Clinic Inc., she agreed to become president of the clinic board in addition to leading the effort in the dental clinic. Thank you, Janet, for your thoughtful and compassionate leadership and thank you Marchel, Heidi, Krissy, Kim, Libby and Kristy for your good work in making the dental clinic possible.”

 Suanne Milligan recognized event sponsors, which were divided into three levels: Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp and McIntosh. See the right panel for the full list of sponsors.

 Also involved with the evening was Harry Siamas, who provided the welcome; and Kalp Juthani, a Wabash College junior, who created a short film about the clinic, “A Tradition of Caring.” Kalp described his vision for the film: 

I wanted to create a film that would showcase the ways in which the clinic is making a difference in Montgomery County, while focusing on the hard work of a small group of individuals. I also wanted the film to touch on the clinic’s numerous needs to sustain itself. 

While the film would go on to accomplish these things, my observations at the Free Clinic would go on to inspire me in many ways. Creating this film would lead me to experiences beyond my vision, allow me to be a part of something greater, and open my mind to the breadth of the healthcare issues that this community faces.

To view this short film, visit http://youtu.be/jKwuBwa1p8I

A list of previous Golden Apple recipients was included on the program. Some of those recipients include Vic Powell, Bill Degitz, Mollie Cooper, Ann O’Dell, Dorothy Riley, Carole Meyer, Katherine Milligan, Isobel Arvin, Bob Rogers, Dr. Richard Eggers and Dr. Keith Baird.