Susu Village in Zambia, Africa, began construction of its long-awaited library last month. Britton area residents contributed about $20,000 to help make the village’s dream become a reality.
Area Residents Play Big Part In Fulfilling Dream
The dream continues to come true, and the ripple effect will likely be felt for generations to come.
Susu Village in the African country of Zambia broke ground for its new long-awaited library last month, a facility that is happening, in large part, to the generosity of Britton area residents.
Just about two years ago Lana Lynn challenged her hometown of Britton to help fund the library. Area residents and former residents responded with over $20,000. That generosity spurred other donations, and lives in Susu Village are being changed.
“The world needs good news, and this is the story about Britton’s very successful investment in a far away country,” said Lynn. “The 100 acres of land purchased with the gifts from Britton are incredibly rich and the farmers kids.
“Investigations took me all over the state and I would sometimes be gone for 60 hours plus a week,” noted Bahr. “I looked at how much I had missed with the kids and decided after a good 20-year career maybe it was time to look for something different.”
He went to work for the Brown County Highway Department, but then the Marshall County Sheriff position came up.
“This was something totally new for me,” said Bahr. “I know the law enforcement side and the criminal side, but I’m not really up to speed on the administrative side. I knew it would be a good challenge for me. My wife was supportive and I got the job offer. I’m glad to be part of the county and banking on being here for quite a while.”
His kids plan to continue going to school in Groton, but the Bahr family is planning to build a home west of Langford in Marshall County this fall. Meanwhile, Bahr has rented a house in Britton, and he has some immediate goals for his new position.
“A huge goal of mine is getting a full staff (seven deputies) and retaining that staff. We want to get them the right training so they can do their job to the best of their ability, and we would like to retain them for a career. My number one priority is the people. You’ve got to respect the people you work with and they have to respect you, with everyone working together.”
Bahr has two deputy positions to fill, including the spot currently held by Bard, and to date has interviewed eight people. But he is also looking forward to Bard’s help in making the transition.
“”I met Brian in the year 2000 in my first cop job when he was a trooper. I’ve known him for a long time and have always looked up to him. He was a familiar face to me and I was glad to see him come on board.”
Bahr also has spent some time working in law enforcement in Marshall County when weekend help was needed and for security during the oil pipeline spill near Amherst several years ago. But he knows he will need some time to really learn all about the county.
“I’m not from this county and don’t know the county like Dale did, but I’m willing to learn and have the staff that will help me get through it. Brian will be instrumental in doing that. He worked side-by-side with Dale for quite a while, getting to know the inner workings of the office, and he can pass a lot of that on to me.”
Bahr’s biggest goal in his new position is just to help people.
“I’m a people person, and not being from this county, one of my biggest challenges is getting out to meet people, even though COVID-19 is making that more difficult. But I think my history of investigations in law enforcement have probably helped me get to know and understand people. I know it’s not always about pulling people over and writing a ticket. A big part of this job is about helping people on the side of the road or talking them through hard times.”
“Britton’s investment in this community has provided opportunities for economic growth and education that will impact generations to come.” ----Lana Lynn