Children have a way of making adults realize how important some things in life our. They humor us with their rightful honesty and their innocence. Oftentimes, toddlers have us cracking up with their brutal honesty, telling us exactly how they feel. Leave it to a young child to point out meanness in a matter of seconds. If you are having a bad day, they will know, as they are much more in tuned with their feelings and surroundings than we give them credit for.
When North Dakota resident, Brandon Bakke reached a certain age, he asked his adoptive parents about his biological parents, who had given him up at birth. His biological father, Terrence had recently passed away and was buried in Chicago, but he didn’t have a gravestone with his buried body. When Brandon found this out, he immediately went to work mowing lawns in his neighborhood in an attempt to save money so he could purchase a headstone for his father, who he never knew. “I don’t think anybody should go unknown in life,” said Brandon.
After a long, grueling summer of mowing lawns, Brandon saved up enough money to purchase the monument. He worked with artists and designers at Dakota Monument to create the perfect marker that would honor his father. And when the word got out about Brandon’s dedication to honor his dad, Dakota Monument gave him the gravestone at no charge.
Brandon is a perfect example of someone who is filled with goodness. While he never met his father, and he very well could’ve held grudges on him, instead he turned that into kindness as he worked hard to give his father meaning.
And apparently, the sixth-grader didn’t stop there. He will continue to work hard mowing lawns and donating his hard-earned money toward people across the country who don’t have gravestones that honor them. He has named his new project, Mowing For A Purpose.
Brandon’s story is one that can inspire all of us to take a moment and think about what really matters in life-being kind to one another. Like a rippling effect, Brandon has left a mark on several others…
“What an amazing kid. I have another hero.”
And Brandon certainly has the right work ethic. We can guess that he is going to be one successful man some day…
“He didn’t need go fund me. He funded himself and made himself a man in his young age.”
“I am sure this young man will grow up to be a great adult with a lot of determination. This shows what a caring and giving human being he is.”
“Thank you for all the kind words and encouragement! He wants to continue and get this coast to coast! He has started Mowing For A Purpose to raise awareness and will donate to raise funds so other families can honor their loved ones!” -Brandy Baake (Brandon’s adoptive mother).
Maybe other kids his age will follow in his footsteps and start projects that are close to their heart.