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Six St. Peters citizens receive Kindness awards

Once each quarter at its Board of Aldermen meetings, the city of St. Peters recognizes citizens who have gone “above and beyond” with kindness in the community.  Recipients receive a Random Acts of Kindness Certificate signed by the mayor. 

The Random Acts of Kindness Program was created by the board and mayor. They believe no one is too young or too old to make a difference, and no act of kindness is too small. The purpose is to recognize acts by people who make St. Peters a great place in which to live and to motivate all citizens to see good happening in the community.

At the Jan. 28 board meeting, Mackenzie Rupard, Beverly & John Galla, and the Whittaker family were presented the award. The Whittaker family and their nominator were unable to attend, so those certificates were sent via mail.

Mackenzie Rupard

“Mackenzie is truly an amazing person. Last winter she organized over 130 Blessing Bags to hand out to the homeless. This, in itself, is a remarkable act, but what makes it even more mentionable is that Mackenzie is only 10 years old,” Kristen Webb wrote in her nomination of Mackenzie Rupard.

“Last winter after a discussion with her mom, Lynn, Mackenzie decided that she needed to find a way to help those living without a home,” Webb continued. “With the help of an Amazon wish list and her mom’s Facebook account, Mackenzie collected supplies to fill these bags. Among other things, the bags contained items like socks, gloves, rain ponchos, first aid kits, emergency blankets, Kleenex, Chapstick, wet wipes, snacks, hand/foot warmers, deodorant and water.

“Not only did she collect and assemble each bag, she kept them in the back seat with her or in the trunk so that they were easily accessible when she was out in the community to give those that she saw in need.

“Although this act was great in itself, this was not Mackenzie’s first charitable act. She has gone to many garage sales asking for donations of gently-used sports equipment to donate to St. Louis Youth Sports Outreach.  In 2018, she contacted Academy of Sports and convinced them to donate 28 coaches’ baseball kits to the organization. She truly is a remarkable kid with a big heart.”

Ward 3 Alderman Melissa Reimer (left) with Mike and Lynn Rupard; their daughter, Mackenzie; and Ward 3 Alderman Terri Violet (Source: City of St. Peters)

Beverly and John Galla

“Beverly and John Galla are very special neighbors who make our world a better place. Bev is very generous, kind, always upbeat and encouraging, which surely keeps my spirit up,” Maribeth Huddleston wrote in her nomination of the Gallas.

Huddleston wrote how Bev helps her in big ways and small ones, including grocery shopping, laundry, cooking/baking, rides and even weeding and mulching her butterfly garden/yard.

“John has been a real asset in doing some maintenance projects around my home,” Huddleston wrote. “I’m so blessed for all the many ways Beverly and John have made my life better.”

Ward 3 Alderman Terri Violet (left) with Beverly and John Galla, Maribeth Huddleston and Ward 3 Alderman Melissa Reimer (Source: City of St. Peters)

Jim, Shane and Bobbie Whittaker

“When my husband came down with cancer, Jim prepared and brought over lasagna,” Sally Matthews wrote in her nomination of the Whittakers. “He and Shane shoveled our driveway and sidewalk after every snow.

“Now, since the COVID-19 virus pandemic, Bobbie has been grocery shopping for us many times.”

According to the city’s website, nominees must be individuals or groups who reside or own a business in the city of St. Peters. There is no age limit. The mayor and the board of aldermen, as well as their immediate family, are not eligible to make nominations nor receive awards. Acts not eligible for an award include, but are not limited to, specific jobs or volunteer duties and  matters of political controversy, ideological or religious responsibilities, or those contrary to the city’s policies.

Nomination forms can be found online at stpetersmo.net/random-acts-of-kindness.aspx. For additional information, residents can call (636) 477-6600. 

When making a nomination, specific examples must be cited identifying ways in which the nominee went above and beyond to demonstrate acts of kindness to benefit the community or individual(s) outside of the nominee’s own family. 

Nominations are accepted on an ongoing basis but must be submitted at least 30 days prior to the presentation date for consideration that quarter. Nominations are reviewed and considered by a committee of staff members appointed by the city administrator. 

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