Vietzke, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Vietzke


Since they came to Porter County in August, 1941, Dr. Paul C. F. Vietzke, his wife, Alice, and their four children have been active, contributing members of the Valparaiso community. Born on a farm near Stanwood, Michigan, Dr. Vietzke was educated at Ferris Institute (now Ferris State College) Big Rapids, Michigan, Chicago Training School (now part of Garrett Evangelical Seminary, Evanston, Ill.) Depauw University Greencastle, Indiana, and Indiana University School of Medicine, with graduate work at Cook County Hospital and Northwestern University Medical Center. Mrs. Vietzke is a graduate of Whiting, Indiana, public schools and DePauw University.

When they decided to enter private practice the Vietzkes chose Valparaiso because it was near both their homes, because of the strong encouragement of the Reverend Russell B. Kern, then pastor of the First Methodist Church, and because of the excellent new county hospital, Porter Memorial. Before coming to Valparaiso the Vietzkes had served the American Indians under the Bureau of Indian Affairs in government hospitals in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Fort Defiance, Arizona; Crow Agency, Montana, and Talihina, Oklahoma. Their two younger children, Wesley and Kathleen, were born on reservations.

In 1940, because of his work as chief surgeon in BIA hospitals, Dr. Vietzke was honored by election to membership in the International College of Surgeons, of which he is a Life Fellow. He is also a member of the Society of Abdominal Surgeons, Porter County Medical Society, Indiana State Medical Association and the American Medical Association. He served DePauw University as a member of the Board of Trustees from 1946 to 1966, elected by the Northwest Indiana Conference of the Methodist Church. During those years the four Vietzke children all graduated from DePauw with distinction. Dr. Vietzke has always been an active, loyal member of his church, serving locally as member of the administrative board, trustee, lay member of annual conference, and on district and conference boards of church location. He is a twenty-five year member of Kiwanis Club, American Legion, and several Masonic bodies-Porter L 0 d g e 137, F. & A. M.; South Bend Consistory, Scottish Rite, and Orak Shrine, Hammond.

Because of his heavy medical practice he could not be as active in civic affairs as he would have liked. So he encouraged Mrs. Vietzke to participate. She needed little encouragement, and over the years worked in many educational and service organizations: P.T.A., Band Parents, Cub Scouts, Y.M.C.A., V.N.A., Church Women United. She served as President of the American Association of University Women, Valparaiso Woman's Club, and the Family Service Association of Porter County, which she helped organize. For seventeen years, from 1952 to 1969, she was a member of the City Plan Commission, part of the time also on the Board of Zoning Appeals. Named Woman of Distinction in Valparaiso in 1956, she received an Alumni Citation from DePauw in 1961. But her church work always came first. She served for many years as a member of the administrative board, work area of Missions, lay member of conference, and was active in all levels of the United Methodist Women. But the most difficult and rewarding was her work with youth Junior High, High School and College. She taught a high school class for twenty-five years and kept in touch with many when they went away to college or service as representative of the United Methodist Women.

All the Vietzke children were involved with church, school and community while they were here, but only one is currently living in Valparaiso. Paul C., M.D., is a Board-certified specialist in Internal Medicine on the faculty of the University of California Medical School in San Francisco. He has two sons, Paul and Jeffrey. Joyce (Mrs. Melvin Allen), is an elementary teacher in Charlotte, North Carolina. They have four children, Jeffrey and Pamela in college, and Craig and Cynthia. Wesley, M.D., also a Board-certified Internist, has just joined a group practice at Yale University after several years as associate dean of the University of Connecticut Medical School. They have two children, Gay Elizabeth and Robert Paul. Kathleen (Mrs. Donald Evans), graduated from Valparaiso University Law School in 1974. Kathleen and Don are practicing with Gary Legal Aid and living in Valparaiso. They have one daughter, Melissa.

For twenty years, from 1942 to 1962, the Vietzkes lived at 60 Jefferson St., Valparaiso. They remodeled the sixteen room home built by the Leonards in 1905 and later used as apartments and a funeral home, so that the first floor was a modern, well-equipped medical office, and the second and third floors the family home. When Dr. Vietzke joined in building the Valparaiso Medical Center at 1005 Campbell, the family moved to a new home in Forest Park. The Jefferson Street building was sold to Drs. Jack and Tom Dittmer for their medical offices.

Dr. Vietzke passed away while this book was being published.

Source: American Revolution Bicentennial Committee of Porter County. 1976. A Biographical History of Porter County, Indiana. Valparaiso, Indiana: American Revolution Bicentennial Committee of Porter County, Inc. 180 p.
Page(s) in Source: 171-172

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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