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Ripon bench honors Spud MacDonald
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The MacDonald Family Trust is promoting health among the elderly.
They’ve decided to do so by dedicating a six-foot long metal bench in front of the Ripon Senior Center to honor the matriarch of the family.
For the better part of the past 40 years, Spud MacDonald made the rounds walking some familiar parts of Ripon.
She was greeted regularly by folks along her two-mile trek, going from Palm Avenue, Main Street, Robert Avenue and Fourth Street.
MacDonald, 91, passed away in late April.
“She walked nearly every day until her last two months (before becoming ill),” said her son Robin MacDonald, who heads the family trust.
He added: “We’re hoping to get older people to spend time outside walking (with this bench).”
The bench will be painted in red as in Ripon High colors. She spent many years rooting on the Indians, with her late husband Barney, a teacher and coach, and her sons being involved in the various sports.
In her memory will be a stainless steel plaque with her photo etched, reading: “Thanks Ripon for 50 Great Years – Spud MacDonald, 1924-2016; She walked in to her 90s.”
The latter part of the inscribed words was credited to Bulletin reporter Glen Kahl for his story which appeared about nearly two years ago on Spud MacDonald’s 90th birthday. She was joined by those attending her 2014 special occasion with a celebratory walk of her route.
The bench will be located along Fourth Street just south of the Senior Center.
At the Aug. 9 meeting, the Ripon City Council not only accepted the sizeable $2,300 donation for the bench made entirely possible by the trust but also took time to publicly thank the MacDonald family.
She was born in Montana and moved to Ripon in 1964 with her husband.
In the spirit of Spud MacDonald, the family thought a bench – along Fourth Street just south of the Senior Center – in her honor would encourage more of the elderly to taking up daily walks.
The donation of the bench and plaque includes installation and maintenance, keeping up with city standards.
Robin MacDonald indicated Monday that the bench is still being built, estimating eight to 10 weeks for the installation efforts to begin.

To contact reporter Vince Rembulat, e-mail