In addition to supporting Safe Passage, Yorn has had a successful career as a businesswoman and health care professional for over 30 years, Mattingly reported. “As if that wasn’t enough, during this same time period she has volunteered her time and talents to organizations within Batesville and the surrounding community that are simply too numerous to list here this evening.”
The honoree, also raised by her mom, the late Ruth Lindenmeyer, was married to her high school sweetheart, Jon, for 34 years before his sudden death five years ago. The lifelong Batesville area resident has three children (Jason “Jake” Yorn, Erin Ortiz and Elizabeth McDonald) and seven grandchildren – with triplets expected this summer.
Upon accepting her crystal plaque, the self-effacing Yorn praised past and current chamber honorees. “These are groups and individuals who have partnered with Safe Passage over the years.”
She observed, “This is a community filled with individuals who live lives of service and commitment and I have been blessed to have served side by side with many of you through church, school and community projects. It is a privilege to be here and to represent all those who strive to make Batesville a wonderful place to live ...”
Inspired by Yorn’s enthusiasm for the project, “those first board members sat in a cold, dark building with bats swooping overhead, crunching numbers and swearing that there would be no way we could fund a shelter and services for five counties – but they continued to roll up their sleeves, press forward and, with the help of strong city leaders, churches, businesses and friends, we are doing what seemed to be impossible at the time.”
She reflected, “I am grateful for those who – especially in the early days of Safe Passage – put up with a lot while this dream was being pursued. My then teenage daughters learned to take crisis calls because the hotline rang to our home phone!” She also remembered “my husband with his friends, who moved women and kids and furniture in the dark of night to bring them to safety.”