Lowell Kutches
April 26, 1940 – July 17, 2023

by Julie Gotham, Bikes4Kids Executive Director

In July 2023 we said goodbye to one of our beloved volunteers, Lowell Kutches.

Kutch and Al Sannerud worked closely together in the early days to launch Bikes4Kids. According to Betty Sannerud, the two of them drank plenty of coffee while planning, scheming in the best possible way, and getting things done. Betty credits Kutch with being the driving force in making the vision a reality.

Just like the rest of his life, Kutch played many roles with Bikes4Kids. It’s hard to summarize the work of a person who just showed up and did whatever needed to be done, and there was truly nothing he wouldn’t do. Kutch painted and maintained trailers, raised money, shoveled snow, cut grass, assembled and repaired tents, and did a hundred other things that just needed to be done. He never waited to be asked, but if there was a special request, he never said no (unless he was going fishing first!).

From the very beginning of B4K, Kutch served on the Board of Directors. He brought wise counsel but also true leadership. He was often the first to raise his hand to take on a task, and he always led by example. Kutch never supported a plan or strategy without actively working to make it happen. He was a positive influence on everything he touched.

For me personally, I will never forget how warm and welcoming Kutch was to me when I first started with Bikes. I will remember fixing a retaining wall with him, taping tents, and setting up for the next volunteer social event and cleaning up after. I knew that if something came up, I could ask Kutch to help, and he was there. I will remember making coffee on a hot summer afternoon because Kutch would be there, and he would want coffee. I will remember the way he always had a cookie, ice cream cone, or some other sweet in his hand, and I will remember how he made me feel like my box-mixed brownies were the best thing he ever ate. He was special that way, and I will miss him.

Kutch was an active member at Faith Lutheran and one of the FROGS. He served the community as an active member of the Coon Rapids Kiwanis Club and through Global Health. He loved fishing, hunting, traveling, and his family. We are fortunate to have shared part of his life.

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When people receive a bike from Bikes4Kids we often receive wonderful messages of thanks. Here are a few:

Thank you for the bike. I love how I have one now that is spring and summer is crepping by even tho it is in like 3 months. So now I can go biking and have adventers with friends. So thank you so much and may God bless you and your family!
A Friend
Thank you so much for the bike. I am so grateful I can go on this trip. Thank you so much.

Thank you for making me the bike. I love riding my bike, so the fact that I got a bike is epic! Thank you guys for the new referbished bike it’s awesome.

Noah & Logan
Thank you so much for my bike! It’s exactly what I wanted! I ♥ the water bottle holder because my old bike didn’t have one. Thanks again!

Thank you so much!! That date is coming up fast!! Thank you again for all your help in getting my boys new bikes! I haven’t told them this, as I want it to be a huge surprise for them!! I’ll probably cry happy tears when they get them, as my boys have never had new bikes of their own!! I appreciate you so much and blessings to you and your family as well as this organization!!

Thank you so much for the awesome bike! You have no idea how much this will help me so I can get to work!!:) Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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