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Heck Retires From Airport Commission; Terminal Named For Him


A man who spent 43 years leading the Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport has retired from the Commission and has been honored by the Rhinelander City Council.

Robert Heck was the leader of the cause for the Rhinelander airport. He spoke at Monday's council meeting in announcing his retirement as Chairman of the Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport Commission.

He says the Commission and airport leaders have had an impact...

"...as your chair we were able to complete $38 million of federal, state and local projects an we're very proud of that accomplishment. $38 million from federal, state and local governments..."

Heck thanked all the mayors and city councils who he worked with over the years, and the commissioners, employees and staff at the airport. Airport Manager Joe Brauer is also retiring and Heck says they've spent a considerable amount of time planning the future. A Rhinelander High School graduate, Matthew Leitner will take over for Brauer as airport director in May.

Heck helped build the facility to where it is considered a critical point in Rhinelander's economy. He told the crowd he was proud of what was accomplished...

"...the quest that I started 43 years ago was to make Rhinelander have one of the finest, most functional airports anywhere in the state. Ladies and gentlemen I come to you that I'm very proud of the fact that I feel that all of us have accomplished that objective...."

The council later named Printpak leader Pat Marquardt as the new Airport Commission head. The council later named the airport terminal to honor Robert G. Heck. In other action, the council also approved borrowing of 3.5 million dollars to finance city projects, including money to begin repairing Rhinelander streets and roads.

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