Young snow shoveling brigade helps McCloudians dig out

Shareen Strauss
McCloud’s Jaden Quiring capitalizes on the snow, offering to shovel his neighbors. But he said he’ll take what they can afford to give, and has coordinated his friends to help with the big chore of digging out after a big storm, like last week’s whammy.  
Photo by Shareen Strauss

“The town of McCloud is full of real helpful people,” said resident Dan Fay as he reflected on last week’s storms and the effort it took to get shoveled out.

The younger generation in McCloud has taken it on themselves to help those in need as many elderly people are unable to unbury their driveways, walkways and snow-covered cars.

One young entrepreneur, Jaden Quiring, posted last week on Facebook that he was available to shovel snow. He immediately received so many requests after the big two-day snow storm that he put the word out to his high school friends for help.  

Quiring said he’s been shoveling show “since I can remember. ... I feel bad that there are more people in McCloud that need to be shoveled out than I can help. The hardest part is distributing the jobs and figuring out how much I can do before I have to go to my regular job at the McCloud Market.”  

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KC Chandler, Travis Blumel, Alisha and Jerome Jr. Walker, Asia Hendrix, Toby Tillman, Kathleen Hunt, Mason and Parker Girard, Nathaniel Mero, Isaiah Castellon, Aden Gardner, and Sam Matthews have become Quiring’s backup crew, though some have also been working independently.   

What these teens say they like best about shoveling people out is the reward of seeing what they did at each job and feeling good that they have helped others.

“I don’t want people to feel that they are shorting me,” said Quiring. “I will take whatever people can afford. I am doing this because people in McCloud need this help and many can’t do it themselves.”  

If two teens are working together, they split what they make. Sometimes they work for free. Many times, they are given baked goods, gloves, jackets, or hats. Quiring delivers the clothing items to teens that need it the most.  

“Jaden needed a lot of help. He bit off more than he can chew because he loves to help people,” said Asia Hendrix. “I know he doesn’t like being the middle guy all the time but he does a good job. I think this is fun and I like helping people so I will continue. I think it is great that so many kids in our town are helping.” 

These students work between classes and some, like Quiring, have other regular jobs as well. 

McCloud’s Jaden Quiring capitalizes on the snow, offering to shovel his neighbors. But he said he’ll take what they can afford to give, and has coordinated his friends to help with the big chore of digging out after a big storm, like last week’s whammy.

Travis Blumel said he shoveled about 15 to 20 houses over a period of three days. He is saving his money to buy his senior class ring.  

Aden Gardner said he shoveled about eight hours a day for five days in a row. He, like Quiring, said that he is saving what he makes for his future.  

McCloud resident Melissa Rickard said Quiring has been helping her and her husband shovel after snowstorms for years. 

“We love that boy. Not only does he shovel, but he brings in our firewood and takes out our trash Monday mornings,” said Rickard. “He had to come back three times in one day because the snow plow kept burying our car. He was in elementary school when he first came knocking on our door asking for work. To this day he takes care of us. He is a wonderful person.”  

Quiring grew up in McCloud where it is commonplace for a resident with a snow blower or a snowplow to move snow for their neighbors without being asked.  

“We have way more support here than anyplace we have ever lived before,” said Dan Fay. “Our neighbor just came over and started shoveling us out with their Bobcat – but people here are like that.”