“Just to give him a little bit of that independence back, where he can just drive up and go wherever he wants – it’s awesome to make that kind of an impact in somebody else’s life.” – Lauranna Jennen, recipient’s neighbor
Hailee Softing, Teller Trainer
Todd J. Arnston
Inspired by his grandfather’s experience being an active person in a wheelchair, Jim Jennen decided to reconfigure a ditch mowing machine into a track machine for his longtime neighbor, Todd Arntson.
“We wanted his input to make this the most versatile machine to help him out on a day-to-day basis,” Jim’s wife, Lauranna, explains.
“We had ideas, and he said he didn’t want to spend that,” Jim notes. “But I said, ‘Todd, this is your dream machine. Tell me what you want, and we’ll build it.’ I think this will exceed what the other machines you can buy will do.”
Bell teller trainer Hailee Softing saw in a social media post that Jim and Lauranna were raising money for Todd’s track machine. She immediately decided to contribute her Pay It Forward funds to the cause, and she asked some of her co-workers to join forces with her to help Todd, who is also a longtime Bell customer.
“I found some people who were very eager to pitch in,” Hailee notes. “It’s so cool that we can choose where the money goes.”
They pooled together $2,750 – almost half of the total amount the Jennens raised for the machine.
“I’ve been wanting to go on an elk hunt. This will open that up unbelievably,” Todd comments. “It’s going to allow me to have the hunt of a lifetime.”
The machine will also help Todd with the work he does for his storage business.
“Todd is truly inspirational,” Lauranna says. “Just to give him a little bit of that independence back, where he can just drive up and go wherever he wants – it’s awesome to make that kind of an impact in somebody else’s life.”
Through the Pay It Forward program, Bell gives employees money each year to donate to people and causes they care about.