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Kim Winnegge, Published February 07 2009

Man happy to help strangers in need

Even though he didn’t know all of them, Bob Berg was the force behind 79 fundraisers benefiting families in need.

Now he’s helping a Twin Valley, Minn., family struggling with the loss of their dad and husband.

A fundraiser for the family of 30-year-old Dan Horn is today in Ada, Minn. Horn died in a car accident near Borup, Minn., on Dec. 9.

Organizing the fundraiser is no big deal for the Hendrum, Minn., man who has spearheaded benefits raising tens of thousands of dollars for strangers.

“I saw a real need out there for (fundraisers),” Berg said. “A lot of people want to help out other people, so I started. It snowballed from there.”

Dan Horn’s father, Harvey Horn, is grateful for Berg’s help.

“It’s really hard to put into words. We never expected anything like that,” Harvey Horn said.

It’s a familiar reaction for Berg.

“Somebody needs to show everybody how to do that,” Berg said. “I just make time.”

Horn said meeting the stranger who is putting on today’s dinner and silent auction for his son was inspiring.

“It was fantastic and unbelievable that somebody would do this. It’s unreal,” he said.

The average benefit raises from $5,000 to $10,000. The amount raised at benefits arranged by Bob Berg averages $35,000 to $85,000.

Besides benefits, Berg organizes Christmas parties for senior citizens and toy drives for needy children.

When you pin him down, Berg says yes, a lot has been accomplished, but he passes the credit on to others.

“I get to meet the kindest people in the world,” Berg said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Kim Winnegge at (701) 241-5524

If you go

What: Pork chop dinner and silent auction for Dan Horn’s family.

When: Dinner will be served from 4 to 6:30 p.m., with the auction beginning at 7.

Where: Dinner at Ada (Minn.) High School; auction at Ada VFW