WDAY: The News Leader

Published November 28, 2010, 09:26 AM

81-year old ND man preserves rest stop near Rolla

Rolla, ND (WDAY TV) - A North Dakota man is going the distance to preserve heritage. Correspondent Teri Finneman brings us the final 8 over 80 Special Report from Rolla.

By: Teri Finneman, WDAY

When this rest stop on Highway 281 needed a helping hand, it found a dedicated man to do the job. 81-year-old Alfred Juntunen is in charge of this little rest stop east of Rolla.

He cleans the toilets, keeps the grass mowed, empties the garbage and overall makes the place welcoming. The site's Finnish monument serves as a reminder of the region's heritage and for Alfred; it's a place to welcome travelers.

“You meet the nicest people. They come from all over and it’s same way with my other jobs, at the church or delivering meals.”

Alfred works part time as a janitor at his church and stays busy when Sunday school is in session. He also helps deliver Meals on Wheels, a way to pay it forward for the service the program provided his parents.

He's somebody who wants to make it better for his neighbors. That's what we're all about and that's what Alfred's all about. For Alfred, it's a way to pass the day and for his city, it's a whole lot more.