Energetic Linwood lad finds big helping hand

In his drive to help Ronald McDonald Charities

Miles Mann, 8, above, with his new group of veteran friends: Dale Haugen, Mark Rahn and Lloyd Jones and Bill Abler, standing. All are Disabled American Veterans. (Photo by Cliff Buchan)

Cliff Buchan
News Editor

Miles Mann, the 8-year-old Linwood youth, is not big in physical stature but he has done big things in his two plus years as a youth ambassador for the Ronald McDonald House Charities Upper Midwest.

He has been a youth leader in telling his peers and fellow students about the importance of the charitable group.

So effective has been Miles that he has taken part in Ronald McDonald functions in the Twin Cities and Chicago.

Most of the work has been on his own, but the Linwood lad learned last week that he is not working alone, nor have his efforts gone unnoticed.

Earlier this month, young Mann, working with the McDonald’s in Wyoming, set out on a project to collect 1000 beverage can tabs in a one-day effort. Last Friday was his day to see if the goal could be achieved.

Little did he know he would get some help. Some real big help, in fact.

When Wyoming resident Bill Abler learned of the boy’s effort through a television interview earlier this month, he knew that he wanted to help. And he enlisted some friends who turned Miles’ project into something huge.

When Miles arrived at the Wyoming McDonald’s on Friday, Abler was on hand with buddies Lloyd Jones of Taylors Falls, Dale Haugen of North St. Paul, and Mark Rahn of Oak Grove.

All are members of the Minnesota Paralyzed Veterans and bowl together at Stars & Strikes in Wyoming. Along with Abler, all are members of the Disabled American Veterans.

The four pals, after learning of the boy’s mission, turned to the DAV for a donation of beverage can tabs. When they arrived on Friday, they had bags filled with more than 35,000 beverage can tabs.

A wide-eyed Miles was almost speechless as the veterans presented him with the tabs. The Linwood Elementary School student quickly learned he had far exceeded his 1000-tab goal.

Meredith St. Pierre from the Ronald McDonald Charities organization was also on hand to thank Miles and the veterans for their efforts on behalf of the organization.