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Patrick Keefe, deacon with St. Mary's Catholic Church in West Plains, Missouri, was nominated as an Unsung Hero for the work he does for the Salvation Army and the local homeless shelter, as well as comforting the sick and terminally ill.
Doug and Patty Kissinger of Ozark, Missouri, were nominated as Unsung Heroes for helping local charities, working with the youth in their area, and teaching their own five children how to "give back" to the community.
Our final unsung hero segment is recognizing a couple—Doug and Patty Kissinger, of Ozark, Missouri.
They are both highly active in the Ozark and Branson communities.
Doug is active in the youth ministry at the St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church in Ozark, and organizes charities through the Knights of Columbus.
Patty organizes a team for Relay for Life and helps raise money for Special Olympics.
But they tend to focus on working with the youth.
"Having the opportunity to have a positive influence on the kids, and to reinforce them positively. I catch my husband on third base in Park's ball coaching both teams (laughing), because he's supporting all the kids and telling them what to do, and that's really fun," says Patty.
One of the admirable qualities about this couple is that they encourage their five children to help others, too.
"We're raising a family in the community. Part of it is you want to give back to the community. But part of it is you just want the best for your kids as they grow up in the community. And part of that is becoming involved in the community and making it better," Doug says.
A family friend, Craig Smith, says the Kissingers have inspired him to be a better parent.
"To me, it's important as a parent, to show our kids how you contribute to a community when you're a part of a community. And Doug and Patty are terriffic examples of that. They lead by example. They show their kids that, as a part of this community, whether it be the church, or Ozark, or the community in general, this is what we do to make it better. And I really admire that. It inspires me to try to do the same thing with my kids," Smith says.
(Sound of dishes, children talking)
Doug, who is a manager at the Bob Evans restaurant in Branson, puts his restaurant skills to good use cooking for others, like his youth group and his family. As the family of seven gathers around the breakfast table in their farmhouse, there is abundant laughter.
Moore: So what did you serve up this morning, Doug?
Doug: We had pancakes, and bacon and sausage, scrambled eggs and hashbrowns.
Moore: So, how did it taste, you guys?
Kids: Awesome! Really Good! It was good, except the eggs were a little dry. (Laughter)
One of their daughters, 10-year-old Emily, tells why she helped raise money for cancer patients through Relay for Life. Her little brother, Brett, throws his two cents' worth in, too.
"It makes me feel really good that I can help like that. Because I know that some people can't, and some people don't. So, it makes me feel really good," Emily says.
"I just think it's fun!" adds Brett.
Doug says it's not enough to rely on elected officials and government agencies to make things better: everyone can do a little something.
"You can't just look at the community and complain that something's not getting done or that something needs to be better," he says. "You actually need to be involved and make it better and help do the stuff that needs to be done."
Doug and Patty Kissinger, of Ozark, Missouri, nominated as Unsung Heroes for their involvement in various charities, for working with the youth in their community, and for inspiring their own children to play their part in giving back.
(Sound from breakfast table)
Reporting from Ozark, I'm Jennifer Moore.