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story.lead_photo.caption COURTESY PHOTO/Representative Deaton (left) is pictured with the Bearbowers on the floor of the House of Representatives.

D. Wayne and Janice Bearbower of Anderson were named as recipients of Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe's Senior Service Award on Monday, May 6. Dirk Deaton, the 159th District State representative, joined Lt. Governor Kehoe and the Bearbowers at the ceremony in the Capitol rotunda.

The Bearbowers are two of the seniors from around the state who were honored for their activism within the community. They were one of the only husband and wife couples to receive the award. D.Wayne said there were 69 seniors recognized, from across the state.

Ken Schutten, of the Anderson Betterment Club, heard about the Senior Service Award earlier this year and immediately thought of the Bearbowers.

"They really deserve to be recognized," Schutten said. "They are always at the Betterment Club meetings and are always among the first to volunteer to help. For instance, at the upcoming Berry festival, they've already volunteered to help at the 5k on Friday night and the Berry Festival the next day."

He noted they also do a lot for the Chamber of Commerce. They help run the Chamber Coffee shop in Pineville, they helped assist organizers with the McDonald County Business Expo and they were the ones instrumental in bringing the volunteer income tax services to McDonald County this year.

Deaton collaborated with Schutten to nominate the Bearbowers for the award.

"The Bearbowers are great friends to anyone who comes into contact with them. They are always ready to lend a hand or volunteer their time. They are always ready to help, regardless of if it is through their church or any of the many clubs and organizations of which they are part," said Deaton.

"I was honored to stand with Lt. Governor Kehoe to present the award to the Bearbowers at the ceremony," he added. "I was also proud to introduce them on the House floor where they received a standing ovation from the members of the Missouri House of Representatives for their many contributions to our state."

D.Wayne described the feeling of being in the House chamber, while it was in session, as "unreal."

"It was such a treat," said Janice.

After the House's session concluded, the Bearbowers were given a private tour of the Capitol, the Missouri Supreme Court and the law library.

The Bearbowers are active members of the Anderson community. This includes being active in Revelation Christian Church of Anderson, and Community Baptist Church of Noel. They are heavily involved in the Anderson Betterment Club, as well as several other community organizations. They both serve as ambassadors for the McDonald County Chamber of Commerce, which includes staffing the chamber office in Pineville. They also represent Anderson within the Harry S. Truman Coordinating Council's Traffic Advisory Committee.

First created in 2005, the Lieutenant Governor's Service Award acknowledges senior citizens who provide their local communities with at least 40 hours of community service per year. Recipients are individuals who epitomize the values of giving, being a good neighbor and commitment and service to others.

General News on 05/16/2019

Print Headline: Bearbowers Receive Senior Service Award

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