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Editorial: Tribune Thumbs

To Clarks Grove resident Mickey Nelson.

One can’t help but look at Clarks Grove man Mickey Nelson with a smile. 

Nelson, who is 100 years old, finished his 100-mile walking fundraiser on Wednesday for the Salvation Army Northern Division. The money will be for COVID-19 relief.

The fundraiser started as a challenge from his daughters, but quickly grew into something more. After initially being interviewed by KARE 11 out of Minneapolis, Nelson was interviewed by numerous TV stations and newspapers, including the Minneapolis Star Tribune, “Good Morning America,” and CNN International.

In an interview in May, Nelson said he has always been lucky enough to have food on the table and wanted to help others who might not be able to provide meals for their family during the pandemic.

As of Thursday morning, he had raised $106,440, according to his fundraising page.

Amid all the challenging stories in the last few months, Nelson has been a ray of sunshine, bringing hope to many.

We thank him not only for his efforts in raising money for a worthwhile cause, but for the inspiration he gave to all of us to be a good neighbor and do our part to better the world around us.

To the Freeborn County Relay for Life.

Though it will look much different than it has in the past, the Freeborn County Relay for Life’s purpose remains the same: to recognize cancer survivors in the area and to raise money in the fight against cancer.

Instead of the traditional event, this year organizers have planned a drive-thru luminaria event, where people can drive through Edgewater Park and look at luminaria decorated in memory or honor of loved ones who have fought or may still be battling cancer.

The event is slated for 7 to 9:30 p.m. today at the park.

We encourage people to support this cause as cancer affects many throughout the community.

We also thank this year’s honored cancer survivors, Sally Skrlin and DeeAnn Goette, who have shared their cancer journeys with the community. These two women serve as an inspiration to many.

To a new relief program to aid nonprofits affected by COVID-19.

Thanks to the Freeborn County Board of Commissioners, who on Tuesday voted to allocate $500,000 of the federal CARES Act funds the county received into a fund to help nonprofits that have been impacted by COVID-19.

The program targets nonprofits that provide direct services to people in the community, including organizations such as the United Way of Freeborn County, Semcac, the Life Center of Freeborn County and Salvation Army, to name a few. Many of these organizations are unable to hold some of their typical fundraisers because of the pandemic and have been serving more people during the downturn in the economy.

The program will be similar to the grant relief program in place for businesses hurt by COVID-19 that was organized by the county, city of Albert Lea and Albert Lea Economic Development Agency.

An estimated $3,000 to $15,000 is expected to be available for qualifying nonprofits.

Applications will be sent to the nonprofits in the county, and money will hopefully be able to be disbursed by the start of September.

We hope eligible nonprofits take advantage of the program, and we applaud the commissioners for dedicating these funds to help these organizations.