Bismarck's Ronald McDonald House Turns 25

Bismarck - Sometimes all you need is to feel at home.

The Ronald McDonald House has been giving those who stay there just that and they've been doing it for a quarter of a century.

 Every brick laid and every room in the house represents an outpouring of generosity from the community.

"We liked the idea of providing this Ronald McDonald House to take care of young people," Joe Mathern, original contractor for Bismarck's Ronald McDonald House says.

For people like the Herman family, a Ronald McDonald house is more than just a place to stay.

"We started by staying in one in the late '80s. Eighty-nine, '90, and '91. We had a son that passed away that had cancer," Wayne Herman, Ronald McDonald House family says.

And it wasn't the only time they would call on a Ronald McDonald home.

They would stay there again when their other son was diagnosed with a heart defect.

"It gave us the opportunity to be around other people going through similar troubles and it was very comforting," Wayne Herman says.

After their own stay, they worked to start a Ronald McDonald house in Bismarck to give families here access to the same help they had.

"That really makes us feel good that we're helping out families also during their time of need," Connie Herman, Ronald McDonald House Family says.

Julie Walz is a part of one of those families.

"They've just been very spectacular to me and have been very generous. It's just great to have great volunteers and great people like that," Julie Walz, Ronald McDonald family says.

And all these years later, the Ronald McDonald House is still proving there's a way to keep families close no matter the medical obstacles they face.

Ronald McDonald himself stopped by for the very special birthday.


The house in Bismarck has provided housing for more than 4,600 families over the last 25 years.

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