“I liked the lock, and I never knew it existed,” said Tess Thiry, 15. “The way he explained it was very easy to picture. He brought history to life.”
A long-time local history enthusiast, Aussem remembers being intrigued when he was an 8-year-old by photographs of Charles Lindbergh’s mail plane crash in Wedron. At the time Aussem was just beginning to learn to fly.
“I was just born with it. I’ve always loved Ottawa,” Aussem said of his passion for local history and his drive as a child to dig deeper at the Reddick Library. “I’m not a historian. I just love my town.”
Most often Aussem said he concludes his tours with a challenge to tourists, encouraging them to explore their own hometowns, as every place has its own colorful past.