LAKE GENEVA, Wis. – Gary Kellermeier has been wheelchair-bound since 1991, but according to Town of Geneva Police Department officer Bob Linder, Kellermeier does more than most able-bodied people he knows.
Linder has known Kellermeier for more than 20 years, and was out patrolling his neighborhood after a large snowstorm last week when he noticed Kellermeier snowblowing his driveway with his Ariens Sno-Thro. After a morning of complaints from residents angered about the response time from the city’s cleanup crews, Linder was blown away by the sight of Kellermeier maneuvering the snowblower across his snow-covered driveway without hesitation or frustration.
He took the attached photo of Kellermeier and posted on the police department’s Facebook page, a post that has since been liked and shared thousands of times.
Ariens Company got wind of Kellermeier’s story after Linder posted to Facebook, and felt compelled to replace his decades-old Ariens with a newer model. The snowblower, an Ariens Platinum 30-inch Sno-Thro, was equipped with hand warmers and other upgraded features, making Kellermeier’s snow clearing a little more comfortable. The new unit was delivered to Kellermeier at his home by Ariens dealer American Power Equipment on Mar. 19.
“When it snows, I come outside and hook the snowblower up to my chair with a chain on the back of the machine. It pulls me along with it,” said Kellermeier. “I’m just doing what I have to do to get the job done, and I figure that there’s no reason I shouldn’t if I’m able. I like to keep my driveway and sidewalk as clean as I can, and then I’ll usually go help my neighbors. The lady across the road is a single mother, and there’s an elderly lady in her 80s up the road, so I make sure their driveways are clean, too, in case there is an emergency and people would need to get to them.”
To view a video of the delivery, click here.