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Home Fire Victim Thanks Red Cross Volunteer At Community Event

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"It makes me feel good about my volunteering" - Don Jakober, Red Cross Volunteer (Aberdeen, SD)

At the ‘National Night Out’ event held at Melgaard Park in Aberdeen, South Dakota, longtime Red Cross volunteer, Don Jakober, was there to set up a display and represent the Red Cross, much like he does during times of disaster.

But he wasn’t expecting a family he helped after a house fire three years ago to remember him or what he did.

“A woman stopped by our display and asked if I remembered her,” Jakober said. “I was able to put the family (husband, wife and the older girls) up in a hotel overnight and provided them assistance for food and some cloths for the girls as it was their bedrooms that were destroyed in the fire.”

The women expressed her thanks for what Jakober did for them that night and specifically mentioned his warm vehicle the family sat in during the response. It was a cold night in November and the family did not have winter clothing on as they escaped the home.

“My efforts impacted their lives positively, and that makes me feel good about my volunteering,” Jakober added.

Red Cross volunteers logged almost 138,000 hours this past year, helping families prepare for and recover from emergencies like home fires. If you're interested in becoming a Red Cross volunteer, log on to