Wheelchair-bound man receives new snow blower

Ariens replaced Kellermeier's older model after a photo of him went viral on Facebook.

April 15, 2015

LAKE GENEVA, Wis. – Lake Geneva, Wis., resident Gary Kellermeier has been wheelchair-bound since 1991, but according to Town of Geneva Police Department officer Bob Linder, Kellermeier does more than most able-bodied people he knows. 

Linder has known Kellermeier for more than 20 years, and was out patrolling his neighborhood after a large snowstorm last week when he noticed Kellermeier snow blowing his driveway with his Ariens Sno-Thro. After a morning of complaints from residents angered about the response time from the city’s cleanup crews, Linder was blown away by the sight of Kellermeier maneuvering the snow blower across his snow-covered driveway without hesitation or frustration. 
He took a photo of Kellermeier and posted on the police department’s Facebook page – a post that has since been liked and shared thousands of times. 
“I have known Gary for approximately 20 years, and he has always been an upstanding member of our community,” said Lake Geneva Police Department Officer Bob Linder. “He is a hard worker and a family man who has never allowed an obstacle to get in his way. Not only does he do everything for himself, but he helps and inspires all of those around him.”
Ariens Company got wind of Kellermeier’s story after Linder posted to Facebook, and felt compelled to replace his decades-old Ariens with a newer model. The snow blower, an Ariens Platinum 30” Sno-Thro, was equipped with hand warmers and other upgraded features, making Kellermeier’s snow clearing a little more comfortable. The new unit was delivered to Kellermeier at his home by Ariens dealer American Power Equipment on Mar. 19. 
“When it snows, I come outside and hook the snow blower up to my chair with a chain on the back of the machine. It pulls me along with it,” said Kellermeier. “I’m just doing what I have to do to get the job done, and I figure that there’s no reason I shouldn’t if I’m able. I like to keep my driveway and sidewalk as clean as I can, and then I’ll usually go help my neighbors. The lady across the road is a single mother, and there’s an elderly lady in her 80s up the road, so I make sure their driveways are clean, too, in case there is an emergency and people would need to get to them.”
To view a video of the delivery, please click here.