A diagnosis of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis put him on the transplant list
By Tina Snell, Staff Writer
Harold “Bub” Jansen, a lifelong resident of Pierz, is currently in the University of Minnesota Hospitals recovering from a double lung transplant. The hospital called him when they had received compatible lungs Nov. 6.
A benefit has been planned to help Jansen and his wife, Janel, with medical expenses. It will be held Friday at the Pierz Ballroom from 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Jansen’s journey began with pneumonia last winter. He then contracted farmer’s lung from the dust and mold he encounterd as a farmer. Another bout of pneumonia this past spring led to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
The disease is incurable and eventually reduces breathing capabilities. There is a usual survival time of two – five years after diagnosis.
It took nearly three months for Jansen to be qualified for the transplant list. Two and a half weeks after that occurred, he was called for surgery.
The procedure took more than six hours and Jansen will continue to recover in the Twin Cities near the hospital for another three months.
“Everyone loves Harry. He’s a soft-spoken man and was always there when someone needed his help. The family are members of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Pierz,” said Janel’s sister, Mary Tschida. “He could also fix anything. He was employed at Dowco Inc. in Little Falls and had been farming with his son Robert until he got ill.”
Jansen and Janel have had several tragedies enter their lives. He lost a leg in 1979 due to a farming accident and their daughter, Amy, 22, died suddenly in 1999.
The Jansens are parents to Kelly (Mary), Robert (Becky) and have seven grandchildren.
The benefit begins with a chili feed from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. A silent auction takes place with more than 100 baskets of goodies to bid on.
A live auction is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. For that event, guns, deer stands, Clam fish houses, quilts, antiques, tools, an airplane ride, fishing trips, a semi-load of wood and more have been donated.
The Pierz Class of 1969 is sponsoring a bake sale during Friday’s benefit. Any baked items or donations are welcome. Contact Lonnie Hiemenz at (320) 468-2430 or Karen Stangl at (320) 468-6088 for more information.
At 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 30, a raffle to benefit the Jansens will take place at the Red Rooster Bar in Genola. Items to be given away include a 2013 Polaris Sportsman ATV, a Golden Boy .22 Rifle, a 40-inch Panasonic television and $100 cash. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased at local Pierz businesses and Jansen family members.
A fund has also been set up at Farmers and Merchants State Bank in Pierz for those unable to attend the events.
For more information on the benefit, contact Michelle Herold at (320) 468-2461, Karla Stumpf at (320) 468-6516 or Arlene Spiczka at (320) 468-2743.