Have you ever driven along a snow-packed residential street early in the morning after a substantial snow, and wondered how all the driveways got cleared off so fast?
Who woke up early in the abysmal weather to perform random acts of kindness for their neighbors and friends?
Well, Sunday morning in the 1000 block of S.W. Wayne, those individuals were John Friess and his son Coty, along with Brian Connor and his son Collin.
“We’re able bodies still,” said John Friess, who said the group knocked out 13 driveways in about three hours. “What Brian and I always joke about, when we’re older and can’t do it, we hope there’s somebody out there to help us out.”
The act of shoveling/snowblowing someone’s driveway on a blustery morning isn’t exactly an easy or pleasant task.
But for at least the past three years, the men have gotten up early on big snow days to lend a hand to neighbors, before traveling to houses of family and friends for more fun.
“It’s just one of those things we know we’re going to do when it snows,” Friess said.
“They just like to do it,” said Carrie Friess, John’s wife. “They like to help out. They grew up helping out and being a part of the neighborhood.”
Tom Beardmore, the Friesses’ next-door neighbor, is always amazed at the kindness the men provide.
“I was coming out to do mine around 7:30, and they’d already done it,” Beardmore said. “I just think they’re doing a really good thing. They won’t take money, but I always find a way to get money to them.”
Beardmore was one of a handful of neighbors’ houses the group cleared.
“(The neighbor down the street) was trying to get out and couldn’t so they dashed over there,” Beardmore said. “If they see somebody who’s already working the driveway, they’ll stop and finish it for them. It’s very cool.”
With the approximately 3 inches of snow Topeka received, many capital city residents were out and about Sunday morning doing their snow-clearing duty.
Alice Fraise and her husband, Carlos Rios, were armed with shovels readying the sidewalks and walkways for their central Topeka church, Asbury Mount Olive United Method Church, 1196 S.W. Buchanan.
“Got church and got to have the doors open and safety for the people,” Fraise said. “It’s that time of year. This is Christmas season, and kids want snow. I can do without it, but kids want it. We didn’t get it too bad, I don’t think. It could’ve been a lot worse.”
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