Carolyn Rauen Just Won Valentine’s Day


Carolyn Kotz Rauen just won Valentine’s Day with the BEST gift ever!

She surprised her husband of nearly 14 years with a pepperdust 2017 Chevrolet Silverado LT Crew Cab!

They had been talking about looking for a new truck for Donald “Frosty” Rauen Jr. this fall to replace his 2011 resized952017021405385695img951562Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab.

“He’s been wanting a new truck for a long time,” she said. “He’s a hardworking guy, he deserves it. He’s a great husband and father. He’s a very giving person and he is always helping everyone else. He’s not the type of person to buy himself a lot of nice things.”

She was considering surprising him for his birthday later this year but decided to instead plan the surprise for Valentine’s Day.resized952017021405323095img951561

“I was nervous I wouldn’t get him what he wanted, so his brothers helped,” she said.

Their two sons, ages 6 and 9, were at the dealership and had a tough time keeping the secret.

“I can’t believe they haven’t said anything,” she said earlier this week.

When Donald arrived home on Tuesday from work, the truck was parked in the driveway with a big red bow on it.

“He had no clue at all,” she said. “He’s still shocked!”





Troy and April Hutson – A long way from home

Troy and April Hutson

Troy and April Hutson

Troy and April Hutson drove a long way this past week to come and buy their new truck from Runde Chevrolet.  In the time between signing paperwork and starting out for home, they were benevolent enough to give us a little extra time to ask them some questions about their lives and about their recent experience at Runde’s.

What kind of vehicle did you buy?  We bought a new 2011 Silverado 2500 HD.

2011 Silverado 3/4-ton HD

You’re from Sandwich, IL – how far is that from Runde’s?  
It’s about 180 miles and it took us almost three hours to get here.

Have you always lived in that area?
Troy:  I have.  I was born in Sandwich and pretty much lived there my whole life.
April: I wasn’t born in Sandwich, but I’ve lived in that area most of my life.     

What is Sandwich or that area of Illinois famous for or best know for?
The Sandwich Fair.  It’s the biggest county fair in the state of Illinois — we go to it every year.

What do you do for a living there?
Troy:  I work for a … basically like a farm services place.  A co-op?  Right.  It’s an independant fertilizer dealership.
April: I work for an insurance company.

 Do you want to throw out any shouts about your companies to advertise them.
April: No.(laughing)   Troy:  (also laughing)They’re probably a little too far away to do any good.

Do you have kids?  Paxton is our daughter — she’s 11 and Garrett is our son — he’s 9.       

Any pets?  We have a cat and a dog … our dog is a boxer/pit mix.  Sounds like a very muscular dog. Yep, his name is Ranger and he’s actually a big baby … a big lap dog.

Do you have a favorite hang-out spot in Sandwich or the surrounding area?  We don’t really have a hang out spot.  I’d have to say our house.

If you could own your dream vehicle, what would that be?  Troy: My dream vehicle actually would be a Chevy Suburban 3/4-ton four-wheel-drive.    April:  I’d just say the most expensive BMW.

Bianchi's Pizza

What’s your favorite restaurant and how often do you eat there?  Bianchi’s Pizza Place in Ottowa, IL.  It’s a little bit south of Sandwich and we try to get there when we can.

When you have supper at home, is it definitely “table time” or is it head-to-the-living-room-time and all is well as long as no one spills on the couch or carpet?   Table time.

Sam or Martha?

If someone does spill something on the floor at your house, do you handle it calmly with a Martha Stewart type voice or do you fly off the handle like Sam Kinnison would?  April: No comment (laughs).  Troy: I guess that could go either way. It depends on the situation and if they were horsing around or if it was a legitimate accident.

Favorite movie of all-time?  April: The Notebook.   Troy: Smokey and the Bandit I guess, but it’s not quite the same when they edit it for TV.

What did you think of the Super Bowl?  We wanted Pittsburg to win – not the Packers.  We’re Bears fans and we’re waiting for next season.

What did you think about Jay Cutler not playing the whole game in the NFC Championship game against the Packers? 

I don’t know.  Supposedly the Bears medical staff pulled him out of the game.  I mean if he was really hurt bad, that’s one thing.  Looked like he was walking pretty good a couple days lated when the news showed him shopping out in California with his girlfriend.  It didn’t look like he was limping too bad.  It ain’t the end of the world, we’re used to it.  I guess it’s kind of like rooting for the Cubs (laughs).

Have any special plans yet for Valentines Day?  No, not really.        Will you go out on an actual “date”?  Oh, we might.

Can you tell us how and when you met?  Troy: Technically the first time we met was at my house, but she had a boyfriend at that time.  And the next time we met, believe or not, was in a bank parking lot.

Is there anything else you’d like to add about your experience here?  Well we found your trucks on AutoTrader and we called up.  I was originally thinking about buying a used truck, but we ended up with a new truck.  We got along with your salesman (Al Kloft) so well that we didn’t mind driving the three hours to get here.  We’re glad we found Runde’s and very happy with our new truck.

Troy and April preparing for the drive home

Eric Tieskoetter of Runde Auto Group – He’ll Fix Your Car & then Fix You Dinner

Oh the smells one would encounter being a mechanic. Exhaust, gas, diesel, oil, anti-freeze, and of course the mysterious “surprise” smell that (one could only imagine) would be caused from rotting meat mixed with a broken vile of skunk scent. The pains and misery their hands go through, the headaches, the frustrations… it’s, to say the least, no easy task to be a mechanic. To honor our hard working mechanics we had a sit down interview with one of them while he was in between projects. Let me introduce to you – Eric Teiskoetter.

Hey Eric, tell the people a bit about yourself
I was born in Dubuque and still live there. I moved several times throughout my life.   I’ve lived in Iowa City, Coralville, Cedar Rapids and Texas (for a year). I’ve lived in Dubuque for about 25 years though.

How old are you?
I’ll be 31 in two weeks; February 18th.

Do you have any plans for your birthday?
I don’t know yet, just lucky to be alive.

What is your position here at Runde’s?
I’m a Mechanic.

How long have you been with us?
3 years. But I’ve been a mechanic, off and on, since I was 18.

What made you want to be a mechanic?
I like working hard. I like tinkering around with things and figuring out how they work.

What is the most difficult project you have worked on?
Not many things that are hard, I just can’t work with Diesel engines.

What do you like most about your job?
That I get to work hard on something I like to do.

Are you married?
Yes, I’ve been married to Heather for two-and-a-half years.

Do you remember your first date with Heather?
It’s kind of a weird story. But I met Heather over the internet for about a year. We talked for awhile and eventually wanted to meet. So I picked her up at the airport and married her five-and-a-half years later. I was in college at the time at University of Iowa for Mechanical engineering but Heather got pregnant so I had to leave.

Ever plan on going back?
It all depends, maybe.

What kind of vehicle do you drive?
I drive an ’03 Avalanche. My wife drives an ’05 Equinox. We bought both of them from Runde’s and they have been great.

How many kids do you have?
Two Girls – Zoie is three and Brylie is one. They are in daycare now, Zoie might go to preschool next year.

What does Heather do?
She works at Eagle Ridge Resort but is also going to school.

Speaking of the special lady, do you have any plans for Valentines day?
Nothing planned yet.

Do you have any pets?
Draco is our Miniature Pinscher. He’s four years old. He gets all over the place. If we have any food on the counter he will jump up and get it. He’s such a small animal, only weighs four pounds, and the counter is so high, it’s amazing. He can make such a mess **long drawn out sigh**

Did you dress up for Halloween last year?
I took the girls trick or treating. They had a good time, they were dressed as red Devils.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Play PS3 or Xbox – I like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, it’s really fun. I like to cook food. I’m also re-building a boat with a friend.

I play that too, maybe I’ll catch you online sometime.
Sounds good!

If you were abducted by aliens, what would be your plan of attack to escape the mother-ship?
(Eric looks at the question for awhile, looks back up at me with his mouth partly open and a look of confusion across his face) Uhhhhh…. huh?

You know, they abducted you, how do you escape their grasp?
I would wait until one of the aliens was alone with me, cut any restraints they have on me with a hidden knife, take out the alien that’s alone with me and “wear him” as a disguise as I sneak out the ship.

Good answer, the old disguise technique, eh? Who do you think manufactured the mothership?
Probably the government.

Do you think the ship would be hard to repair the ship if it came to need fixing?
It depends on what kind of ship it was.

Lets say a flying saucer.
Then I’d say no. I’m really good with wiring.

What is your favorite restaurant?
I have two favorites. Mulgrew’s in East Dubuque and and Salsa’s in Dubuque.

I love Salsa’s, what do you like to get from there?
Their BIG burritos. *Eric spreads apart his hands about the width of his shoulders indicating that their burritos are… awesome.*

You said you like cooking, what do you like to make?
Everything. I cook steak quite a bit.

Does your wife like your cooking?
*shrugs* Sometimes.

Do you have a favorite movie?
Too many… off the top of my head; Final Destination, Matrix, and Crank. We watch them on our big T.V. at home.

Favorite sports team?
*points to his hat* Iowa.

Who are you rooting for to win the super-bowl, Saints or Colts?

How are you liking the winter?
Eh, sometimes I like it. I don’t really like the snow much but I go snowmobiling. I like summer better.

If you were to win the lottery, what would you do with the money.
It would depend on how much.
Lets say 30 mil.
I’d move next to a lake. Somewhere peaceful where I can fish. I would also travel all over the U.S. and Canada.

What do you and your family like to do together?
We go on vacations. We went to Wisconsin Dells before.

Candy or Gum? …………………….. Gum
Pizza or Speghetti? ……………….. Pizza
Packers or Bears? ………………….. Neither
McDonalds or Burger King? ……. McDonalds
Coke or Pepsi? ……………………….. Dr. Pepper
Gordon or Junior? …………………. Gordon
Christmas or Thanksgiving? ….. Both
Madonna or Lady GaGa? ………… Uh, I don’t know… Madonna maybe?

Thank you for your time Eric!