Stamets returns to seat


HUNTERTOWN — Less then three weeks after having a heart attack-like episode, town Councilman Mike Stamets returned to his seat Monday night — looking none the worse for wear.

“I was anxious to get back into the swing of things,” Stamets said. “I am not back to work 100 percent yet. They said my heart is strong, so that isn’t the major issue. I had some bleeding issues that they weren’t sure where it was coming from. That started the whole thing.”

It was Friday night, July 31, when Stamets felt severe pain in his chest before going to sleep. He said he had been feeling unusually tired for a few weeks before, but never anything serious enough to concern him.

These latest events were certainly concerning.

“All of a sudden it was like someone was sitting on my chest. Classic heart attack symptoms with the left arm and the chest. It hurt so bad that you knew it wasn’t something you were going to just shake off,” Stamets said. “I had been tired for maybe a month. I couldn’t walk to the end of my yard and walk back without having to take a nap. I would just crash on the weekends.”

His wife drove him to the hospital, where he arrived at 10:30 p.m. Stamets said by midnight, his procedure was over and he was in recovery.

He was never cut open. Two stents were put in using a catheter. He said he was awake the entire time and even watched the procedure on a nearby monitor.

“I was impressed with how they handled things, but I was the only cardiac patient,” Stamets said.

He remained in the hospital until Wednesday, Aug. 5, and only has restrictions on lifting. He said his eating habits were not problematic.

He was told there was an acute drop in his red blood cells, dropping from a 15-count down to six.

“They said I shouldn’t have been upright when it got down to eight,” Stamets said. “I was working in a deficit for a month or so and didn’t even know it. You just do what you have to do.”

The bleeding issue still hasn’t been resolved, but he said those tests can’t be done until he gets off of blood thinners and he can’t get off of blood thinners until the stents heal.

He hopes to have those tests done by the end of the month.

Until then, he is easing back into work at his tool and dye shop — Stamets Tool & Engineering Inc. in Auburn — where he works with his brothers.

“I am doing OK,” Stamets said. “I think in another couple of weeks I will be in good shape.”

In other news from the town council meeting:

• The council approved a concurrence document for the Gump Road improvement and utility relocation project. Alan DeLaunay, transportation department manager with Beam, Longest and Neff Consulting, informed the council since the original scope of work was designed eight years ago, modification for the project were needed that the town needed to sign off on.

Instead of two 12-foot travel lanes with a 12-foot center turn lane, the council approved a new plan which would change the scope to two 11-foot travel lanes with a 14-foot center turn lane.

The changes will not add any cost to the project, but does allow the paperwork to begin which will keep the project online for a November letting.

• The council agreed to enter into an agreement with Steve Carter of Carter, Dillon, Umbaugh LLC for rate consulting services for the the wastewater treatment plant project.

Town attorney Dave Hawk said the town has been approved for priority funding for the project through the State Revolving Fund (SRF) Loan Program but that priority position would end when the year does.

The town is still waiting on the resolution of legal issues — including an appeal related to its NPDES permit for the project — before it can pursue funding. Hawk said they short time frame between now and the end of the year makes it imperative that Carter in on board and ready to work.

Carter has provided this service multiple times for the town, Hawk said.

• Gayle Marshall, a resident of Eel River Township, was upset with some of the town’s leaders who she said accused Ted Nitza, a consultant Marshall has hired for wastewater consulting services, of organizing a recent editorial which was published in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette.

Marshall affirmed council members that Nitza had nothing to do with the editorial and that she met with two Allen County Commissioners — Linda Bloom and Nelson Peters — who suggested meeting with the editorial board. Marshall also said she asked a Journal Gazette reporter about the possibility of meeting the publication’s editorial board.

That conversation led to a brief back-and-forth between Marshall and Grant over some town leaders’ use of the word “uneducated” to describe Eel River residents. Grant refused to allow Marshall to claim the town thinks the residents have no education, just that they did not have all the information regarding the town’s position on building a wastewater treatment plant.

Grant met in person with Marshall and between 15-20 Eel River Township residents earlier this year so that both parties could explain their position.

• With the recent news of the cancellation of the Huntertown Heritage Days Festival, councilman Gary Grant motioned to have the $500 the town donates annually be given to the Friends of Huntertown Parks Inc. His motion was approved unanimously.

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