Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Wish Dorothy a happy 100th birthday December 8, 2020

Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo of a pop-up greeting card from my second daughter.

MY DEAR KIND-HEARTED READERS:

In a year that has challenged all of us, uplifting one another holds even greater importance. We each have within us the power to brighten someone’s day through kindness, caring and compassion.

Today I’m asking you to take a moment and send a birthday card to a Faribault woman who is turning 100 years old. I don’t know Dorothy Gallagher’s exact birth date. But Dorothy’s family ran an ad in the Faribault Daily News several days ago asking people to honor her with a card shower. They’re also planning a drive-by parade of vehicles on Saturday, December 12. But my focus is on filling her mailbox with birthday cards.

The display ad states that Dorothy wonders if she can receive 100 cards on her 100th birthday. I bet she can, and I’m counting on you, my dear readers, to help achieve that wish. Consider the joy you will bring to this woman marking a century of life.

Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

PLEASE MAIL YOUR GREETINGS TO:

Dorothy Gallagher

3741 Cannon Lake Trail

Faribault, MN. 55021

Dorothy’s name sounded familiar to me. So I googled her and learned that she served as Rice County’s treasurer for 11 years until her retirement in 1993. Prior to that, she was the deputy treasurer. Her employment with the county began in 1956.

This I learned, and more, from an article published in 2012 in the Daily News. That story focused on Dorothy’s work as an election judge, a task she began after her retirement, and obviously loved.

I’ve never met this Faribault woman. But I surmise she was a determined and busy woman, even a trailblazer of sorts with a career in county government at a time when not all that many women held such positions. The newspaper article reveals that Dorothy’s first job out of high school in her home state of Illinois was cashiering for Montgomery Ward. Now, if you remember that retail store and/or its catalog, you are, like me, dating yourself. Imagine the changes Dorothy has witnessed during the past 100 years.

With an aptitude for numbers, Dorothy also worked at a Faribault bank. She moved here in the early 1940s. She raised a family of five children and is also a grandmother and great grandmother. What a legacy Dorothy leaves.

Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo of birthday cupcakes gifted to me by a loving niece and her family.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to send Dorothy a birthday card with a handwritten note to celebrate her 100 years of life. I am grateful.

© Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling