By Rich Winter
The car crash that took their daughter’s life nearly three years ago still haunts the Ken Hespe family every day. While no one teaches us how to deal with grief, the Hespe’s do something every year that brings good memories of their daughter to life by pumping positivity into someone else’s life.
Every year, right around graduation, the Ken Hespe family presents two Todd County students with a scholarship to continue their education.
“Well Princess, we honored two Todd County students with your 2nd Annual Memorial Scholarships,” Sandra Hespe said. “We are so proud of these two amazing graduates [Ally Murray and Harlan Guerue, Jr.] as they posses the Lakota virtues of wisdom, perseverance, bravery, humility, compassion, generosity, and respect.”
Late last week the Hespes handed over a check for $500 dollars to Guerue and Murray. The money is to be used at a school of higher learning that the young people have decided to attend.
But the scholarships happen because of the work and generosity of others. Hespe said she was grateful for speaker and presenter Butch Artichoker, as well as to Janice and Brian Dillon for heading up the annual Jordyn Hespe Memorial Basketball tournament and to the Jordyn Hespe Memorial Scholarship committee.
While there will be a lot of scholarships distributed in the next five days at graduations, this one has some extra meaning behind it.
“Jordyn always was so generous and she loved being a Falcon. She loved kids so it just seems so right to give out scholarships to two Todd County Students,” Sandra Hespe said. “We look at students who work really hard, are respectful, caring, and don’t always get the recognition they deserve. They are also chosen on how they treat their elders, family, and friends.”
As one might imagine, this scholarship program helps the Hespe’s remember their daughter’s love and appreciation for athletics, young people and the Todd County Falcons.
“Being able to carry on her memory in a positive way helps us,” Hespe said. “although nothing - and I mean nothing - prepares a person for the horrible pain that we live with every second of the day.”
With the presentation of scholarships this week, the Hespe’s turn to the next cycle of this scholarship program.
“We will be having Jordyn’s 3rd Annual Memorial Basketball Tournament in July and are finalizing things for the latter part of July,” Hespe said.