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TRONNES: Sam Tronnes Memorial Foundation thriving

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opinion Mitchell,South Dakota 57301 http://www.mitchellrepublic.com/sites/default/files/styles/square_300/public/fieldimages/18/0731/tronnesdave.jpg?itok=HnsCH_Pk
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TRONNES: Sam Tronnes Memorial Foundation thriving
Mitchell South Dakota 120 South Lawler 57301

In Other Words features opinions from local and other contributors who have areas of special interest or expertise. Material shouldn't exceed 600 words and can be sent, along with a photo.

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The charter of the Sam Tronnes Memorial Foundation and Sam Tronnes Scholarship program since March 2006 has been a commitment to invest in the future by helping to educate our children in post-high school education and career development.

This is our way of keeping our state and country strong while developing good citizens.

As of March, at the State High School Youth Varsity Hockey Tournament, there will have been 70 scholarships awarded to high school seniors from across the state of South Dakota totaling over $55,000. Last year three Mitchell students, Anna Rice, Lindsey Lawrence and Taylor Herrick, received scholarships with an accumulated total of $5,000. In addition, five other students from across the state also received scholarships.

These winners must be good students, athletes and most of all, good citizens, volunteering their time to help others. This helps develop good citizenship, good habits and good leaders for our future.

In addition to direct scholarships, for the first time this year, the STMF is also making direct grants to cities across the state to use in support of young hockey players. These grants can be used to pay registration fees for those who cannot afford to pay, pay for new equipment used for entry level players, or many other possibilities.

It is important to us to not only support our graduating seniors, but also support those at the youngest age in hockey; to get them involved in a physical activity and have fun while learning teamwork and respect of their fellow players.

These grants to South Dakota communities will total $10,000. In addition, the STMF supports the USA Hockey Foundation and the Mitchell Skating and Hockey Association. Total cash payout as of March 2013 will equal $78,750, and that is only since 2006.

The Pro Hockey Celebrity Hunt is our major fundraising event to support the scholarships and grants. For three years, this event has been held in Mitchell and draws more than 200 people to the weekend activity. The STMF, in conjunction with the Mitchell Skating and Hockey Association, strives to provide not only support to the scholarship and grant programs, but also the city of Mitchell and state of South Dakota in additional visitor revenues.

This is a tremendous amount of work being done by many Mitchell residents and it could not happen without dedicated volunteers.

Well done, Mitchell.

- Dave Tronnes, of Mitchell, is president of the Sam Tronnes Memorial Foundation.

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