FFA Chapter raises funds for family in wake of tragedy

Centerville FFA Chapter
Farm Forum

CENTERVILLE, S.D. — On October 23, 2017, the small community of Centerville suffered an unimaginable tragedy. Three local FFA members were in a motor vehicle accident. Two individuals were treated and released, but Dawson Knudson, a Centerville High School freshman, passed away as a result of his injuries from the accident.

While in shock and grief, the Centerville FFA members rallied to do something for Dawson’s family. They decided on a t-shirt fundraiser. Tying in a reminder to be strong for Dawson and the school mascot, the purple and gold shirts read: #TeamDawson, #TornadoesStrong. They worked with Intense Graphics of Beresford who produced 200 shirts the next afternoon. Advertising on Facebook, in less than 24 hours, they needed more shirts! With Centerville Area Foundation assisting with start-up costs, the FFA chapter raised and gifted Dawson’s family $3,500.

“This accident shook our community to its core. To see a 15-year-old boy, with so much hope in his future, taken away by an accident on a gravel road was difficult,” says Ally Johnson, Centerville FFA Chapter president. “As an FFA chapter, we knew Dawson would have made a significant impact in the Centerville FFA and in any other activities he belonged to.”

Pictured left to right: John Balleweg, Lane Hansen, Heather Knudson (Dawson’s Mother), Dalton Knudson (Dawson’s Brother), Blake Johnson, Ally Johnson, Lee Wesche, Amanda Knutson, Dana Knudson (Dawson’s Father), and Stacy King. Courtesy photo