Bender gives final clerk report

St. Joseph County Clerk Pattie Bender issued to the St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners her 24th and final annual clerk’s report Tuesday.
As she wrapped up her four-minute report, an emotional Bender called her 45 years as a county employee a great ride that has included 385 elections, thousands and thousands of meetings, and everlasting friendships.
A lifelong Centreville resident, the 64-year-old Bender is retiring June 30.
Bender received a hearty round of applause from commissioners and members of the audience as she concluded her report and returned from the podium to her seat at the board dais.
Starting July 1, county grant writer Lindsay Oswald, a former Three Rivers city clerk, will fill the remaining 18 months of Bender’s four-year term.
A number of statistics were included in Bender’s clerk’s report. A few examples: 821 pistol permits were issued in 2014, down from 931 in 2013; 481 marriage licenses were issued last year, up from 467 the year before; Bender performed 31 marriages in 2014 compared to 45 in 2013; 282 cremation permits were issued, 245 were provided in 2013; there were 637 births in 2014, down from 736 in 2013; the county recorded 535 deaths last year, an increase from 497 over the previous 12 months; and 310 divorces were filed, a drop from 324 a year earlier.

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