Evening Lions honor two FD car dealerships for their continuing contributions

Shimkat, Johnson

-Messenger photo by Chad Thompson Bruce Shimkat, co-owner of Shimkat Motor Co., left, and Casey Johnson, owner of Fort Dodge Ford Lincoln Toyota, visit at Ja-Mar Drive In Restaurant Tuesday night. Shimkat and Fort Dodge Ford were each honored with Warren Coleman awards. The award is the highest honor awarded by the Lions Club.

The Fort Dodge Evening Lions Club honored two longstanding businesses in Fort Dodge Tuesday night at Ja-Mar Drive In Restaurant for their continuing support of the Lions organization.

Shimkat Motor Co. and Fort Dodge Ford Lincoln Toyota were the recipients of the Warren Coleman award.

Warren Coleman was a longtime treasurer of the Oskaloosa Lions Club. The award that bears his name is the highest honor the Lions Club bestows to people or organizations who sponsor the club.

The first Warren Coleman Award was presented in 1988. The award used to be given to one person in each club for each $1,000 contribution in a Lion year.

Since then, the rules have changed, according to Bill Oberhelman, a 40-year member of the club.

-Messenger photo by Chad Thompson Bruce Shimkat, co-owner of Shimkat Motor Co., shakes hands with Tim Wilson, Evening Lions Club district governor, upon being presented with a Warren Coleman award Tuesday night at Ja-Mar Drive In Restaurant. Gary Edgerton and Bill Oberhelman are pictured behind.

The club now plans to honor two of its sponsors every year, he said. It started the tradition last year by honoring Ja-Mar and Dr. Terry Moehnke’s family optometry practice.

Shimkat and Fort Dodge Ford have helped sponsor the Lions raffles, which ultimately helps others with vision and diabetic needs.

“Shimkat has been around since ’47,” Oberhelman said. “They do a great job for our community.”

Oberhelman added, “And Fort Dodge Ford has been here 22 years. They do a great job.”

Casey Johnson, owner of Fort Dodge Ford, appreciated the award.

-Messenger photo by Chad Thompson Gary Edgerton, left, on behalf of the Fort Dodge Evening Lions Club, presents Casey Johnson, owner of Fort Dodge Ford Lincoln Toyota with a Warren Coleman Award Tuesday night at Ja-Mar Drive In Restaurant. Pictured right of Casey Johnson is Deb Johnson, holding her granddaughter, Isabella Johnson, Matt Johnson, general manager, and his wife Abigail Johnson, digital relations manager.

“This group (Lions) are constantly selling raffles to improve the lives of others,” Johnson said. “It’s not an easy task. Sometimes writing a check is easy, but taking the time is more important. That’s tough to do.”

Matt Johnson, general manager of Fort Dodge Ford, added, “It’s about everyone working in the community together. This community is really a big family and we all look out for each other.”

Upon receiving the award, Shimkat said, “This is very kind and the Lions do so many good things.”

Oberhelman said he continues his work with the Lions because he enjoys it.

“I like going out to raise money,” he said. “But I love giving it away to people who really need it.”

The Lions Club has decided to hold the Warren Coleman award presentation at Ja-Mar for future years.

“We love to have the event here,” Oberhelman said. “Because Jerry (Jordison, owner of Ja-Mar) has been so good to us.”

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