EYE ON KELOLAND: Positivity in 2021

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) – 2021 may have been its ups and downs for many of us, all leaving memories to look back on. And now that we are wrapping up the year, we wanted to pick up on the stories that made us smile, laugh, and maybe even just brighten up your day.

Living in South Dakota, you will always find neighbors helping neighbors and community members stepping up to lend a hand.

That’s exactly what happened to Miller this summer after people got together to paint a house.

Last year Scott Teason was diagnosed with stage four brain cancer.

“So far things look good. The treatments are working. Brain scans are coming back clean, ”Scott said.

He wanted to paint his house, but never succeeded.

Then about 30 people grabbed brushes and got to work.

“We had to scratch the whole house. We had to caulk it, prime it, cover the windows and then we painted it, and we repainted it and then we did the trim. Lots of blood, sweat and tears in this place, but it was also fun, ”said Kecia Beranek, Executive Director of On Hand Development.

A gift for which this family is grateful.

“It’s really a blessing to us and we hope we can pay it back someday,” said Scott’s wife, Trisha Teason.

Residents of a Brookings nursing home prove that you are never too old to cycle.

“I never thought I would be able to ride again. I was very happy when they received them, ”said nursing home resident Darlene Carpenter.

These “wheelchair bikes” are equipped with electronic assistance to facilitate pedaling.

“It’s a beautiful fall day,” said activity assistant Jessie Kuechenmeister.

An activity allowing these residents to once again enjoy a walk in the open air and immerse themselves in nature.

“Sitting here in a chair riding across the street, there’s nothing like it, it’s so unique,” nursing home resident Caroline Potas said.

Over the summer, two best friends became business partners.

At their first lemonade stand, they donated all of their money to an animal rescue.

But their kindness didn’t end there. The money raised from their second lemonade stand was donated to Project SOS.

“We were really happy and excited to be able to make a lemonade stand. And then when a group of people came, I felt really good that a group of people help support the SOS Project and a group of other students, ”said Lauren Olson, a 4th grader.

$ 450 was used to purchase school supplies for children in the area.

“I think a lot of people thought we were crazy to have a whole cart full of about 40 supplies of each thing,” said 4th grade student Macie Miles.

The young business partners hope to do it again next summer.

“It makes me really happy and like I’ve done something really good to help other people,” Olson said.

Healthcare workers have played a key role throughout the pandemic.

And although it is hard work, it is work that a KELOLAND woman has been doing for over 50 years.

Arlene Bryenldson started as CNA and medical aide at Centerville Rehab and Care in 1967.

“One year led to the next and I kept doing what I was doing because I loved it,” said Arlene Bryenldson at CNA, Med Aid.

She turned 86 in September. And she has no plans to retire just yet.

“When I found out she was 86, I said, ‘Arlene are you planning to retire? And she said “no, I’m not planning to retire”, and I said “what if you cut back?” “And she said ‘no, don’t plan to cut back, I had two days off and couldn’t wait to get here,” “Nursing Director Patty Knutson said.

She thanks the residents here who make her want to continue working.

“At some point I’m going to cut back, but right now I’m happy to do what I’m doing because I can,” Bryenldson said.

Finally, we share the story of a WWII veteran, George Ferrel, who was laid to rest at the Sioux Falls Veterans Cemetery.

George had no family or close friends. He befriended Dorothy Allstot at a retirement home where they both lived.

“George was a double amputee, he needed a little help and my mom volunteered just to help improve his quality of life,” said Tom Allstot.

When George died in 2004, Dorthy was able to collect his ashes from the funeral home.

Eventually, Dorothy had Alzheimer’s disease and her son took George’s remains.

“Then I took the remains to my house and my original plan was to bury them at the National Veterans Cemetery near Sturgis,” Allstot said.

But no luck.

After a year and a half of hard work and the help of another veteran, the South Dakota Veterans Cemetery near Sioux Falls said it had a place for George in September.

“I’m going to thank him for his service and I’ll tell him what an honor it is to do this. to do it for him, I’m honored, ”Allstot said.

Now George is in his final resting place.

“There is an old saying that a soldier has a duty to serve and it is our duty to remember it,” Allstot said.

And if you have an idea for a positively KELOLAND, just email it to [email protected]

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