After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease eight years ago, Fred Tegtmeyer started finding new ways to keep his mind busy.
A former Wellington resident who now lives in Nova, Tegtmeyer recently channeled his energy toward helping the Wellington police auxiliary, volunteering his time to add $300 in lighting improvements to its all-terrain vehicle.
“I just love fixing things up and showing them off,” he said. “I took one look at the ATV and said it looked kind of funky and needed more lights. I asked if I could do a job on it.”
Tegtmeyer said often when someone is diagnosed with Parkinson’s, that person has already had it for a number of years.
“I began doing projects like this because of the diagnosis,” he said. “I wanted to be able to keep using my brain to figure out circuits and stuff. Multitasking helps. I’m always trying to do that. Designing circuitry and LED fixtures is just what I do.”
Twenty-two new lights and bulbs were added to the vehicle by Tegtmeyer, including new flashing red and blue lights on the front and rear, as well as adding brightness to the brake lights and spotlight.
A solar powered golf cart has also been on his project list. He ridden one he’s worked on in Wellington’s Fourth of July parade and has pitched specs to both Oberlin College and Ashland University.
“We’re always appreciative when a citizen steps up and asks what they can do to help,” said mayor Hans Schneider. “Fred called me up. I got ahold of the chief and within 24 hours we were good to go. It was a pretty spontaneous process. The actual agreement took only about 15 minutes. We’re very grateful for how the people of this community treat all of their safety services with respect.”
Wellington police chief Tim Barfield said he’s always happy for help from citizens, especially when money isn’t easy to find for issues like lighting improvements.
“Budgets are always tight,” he said. “When Fred first said something to me, I said I’d have to look at the budget. Then Fred reached out the mayor and offered us a great deal. It’s a safety issue and these lights help make our people safer.”
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.
Jonathan Delozier | Wellington Enterprise Fred Tegtmeyer shows off improvements he made to the Wellington police auxiliary’s ATV. He volunteered his labor and added about $300 worth of new and improved lights to the vehicle.