Recent Op-Eds

All of us have special people in our lives who have guided us, loved us, and made us into the individuals we become. For many of us, no one person does more for us than our mothers. As Mother’s Day approaches, we are once again reminded of how much our mothers mean to us, and how grateful many of us are for their love and support.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the first official Mother’s Day, which was celebrated in West Virginia in 1910. The first national proclamation of Mother’s Day followed in 1914. Now, we set aside the second Sunday in May annually to recognize our mothers, grandmothers, and spouses for all they have done to make our lives special. We also take extra time to remember those mothers and grandmothers who have passed away.

South Dakota’s mothers have always worked hard to provide the best they can for their families. Transforming the state’s prairies into rich farm land required women to work alongside men. In the lean years of the Great Depression, mothers took on additional work to make ends meet for their families. My own mom worked as a school librarian when I was growing up. Today, South Dakota mothers are still working to provide for their families, both inside and outside of the home.

We cannot forget the families who will celebrate this Mother’s Day without a mother or a father in the home because of military service overseas. I ask all South Dakotans to join me in keeping these families in their prayers.

My life and my daughters’ lives have been especially touched by three extraordinary women: my mom Pat, my mother-in-law Esther, and my wife Kimberley. Mother’s Day is a chance for me to be especially grateful for them, but my gratitude extends throughout the year. Mother’s Day is a wonderful opportunity for all of us to take time out of our busy lives to go the extra step of showing the mothers in our lives just how much they mean to all of us. I wish all South Dakota mothers a special, happy, Mother’s Day.