Pierre, SD 1953

Pierre, SD Lodge News

Yankton Daily Press and Dakotan Story: Elks Lodge Members Sponsor Veterans Activities

Thanks to the Yankton Daily Press and Dakotan for publishing this story!


October 13, 2019

Members of South Dakota Elks Lodges sponsored 118 activities and programs for 3,105 veterans in the last year. There were 453 Elks and 57 volunteers who provided 1,602 hours of service and cash and non-cash donations totaling $55,282.

Neil E. Harris of the Rapid City Elks Lodge chairs the S.D. Elks Association Veterans Service Committee. His report to the recent Elks convention in Rapid City indicates his service also as a volunteer with the South Dakota Veterans Cemeteries Support Council.

Harris and Elks President Kyle Elenkiwich of Brookings and Harlan Huetson of Sioux Falls, attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the new S.D. Veterans Cemetery in  Sioux Falls. S.D. Elks Association has committed at least $10,000 to provide an avenue of flags in the new cemetery.

Harris commended several members and Elks lodges for their continuing service programs to veterans, including:

Gregg Cramer of Aberdeen; Claude Krause, Yankton Elks Lodge; Al Janzen, Watertown; Benny Audis, Winner; Mike Watson, Deadwood Elks Lodge; Rapid City Lodge and Pierre Elks Lodge, who Harris reports “set another record in collecting donated gifts for the S.D. Veterans Home and VA Medical Center in Hot Springs.”

Chairman Harris also commended John and  Karen Phelan of Hot Springs Elks Lodge who participated in providing activities and outings at both Hot Springs veteran facilities, “and each year they personally log over 1,000 hours of volunteer service to our veterans.”

Yankton Elks Lodge was represented at the state convention by Exalted Ruler Shane Bertsch, Trustees Cindi Goeden and Matt Hanson, former Trustee Tom Reiners, Past Exalted Ruler Lonnie Herrboldt and Chaplain James L. Van Osdel.