Archive of Past Events

Australian sports star delivers message of hope, support to students in Price County
Submitted: 02/09/2017

The Tip Up: Hope in Spite of Pain from Kevin Hines on Vimeo.



COMING FEBRUARY 10, 2016 to the Park Falls, WI Chequamegon School District ~ 

motivational speaker Kevin Hines. Starting at 10:00 a.m.




Suicide Walk for Awareness
8:00 a.m. registration at the Chequamegon School, Park Falls, WI
$15.00 registration fee ~ waived this year!  
The Walk begins at 9:00 a.m. 
Raffles / Door Prizes after the walk
April 2013 ~ Guest motivational speaker Bob Lenz and the illustionist A.J. at the Park Falls, WI - Chequamegon School District

Donation in March 2013 to:

The Lord's Cupboard Food Pantry - Park Falls, WI

March 2013 ... Park Falls, WI - Chequamegon School District Swimming Pool Fund ~ to help towards operation costs:

2013 Jan. 26 8th Annual Justin Donner Memorial Fisheree

== off the green ticket == winners are posted on the 2013 Fisheree Winner page

Grand Prize - Toshiba 40" LED HDTV

2nd Prize - IPAD Mini WI-FI 32GB

3rd Prize - Vapor XT 12S Kayak

4th Prize - KINDLE FIRE HD

5th Prize - $200 Gift Certificate @ Super One Foods Park Falls

6th Prize - GRILL PRO Smoker

The JPD Warrior Project committee would like to thank the following sponsors for the  8th Annual Justin Donner Memorial Fisheree prizes:



1st - 8" Power Auger - Tony & Dawn Sabo

2nd - Rod & Reel - JPD Warrior Project, Inc.

3rd - 2 Beaver Dam Tip-Ups - Jennifer & Chad Petit

4th - $50 Cash - Klockow Dentistry



1st - Covert Game Camera -  Fifield Seed N Feed 

2nd - Otter Sled - Fifield Auto Werks

3rd - 2 Beaver Dam Tip-Ups - Flambeau Lanes

4th - $50 Cash - Park Falls Print and Copy



1st -  Vexilar - SBI Pepsi

2nd - Buddy Heater - J.D. & Jane Donner

3rd - Jig Rod & Reel - St Croix Rods

4th - $50 Cash - AC Carpet Plus



1st - 2 Man Ice House - B & B Insurance Agency / Lucky 13 Power Sports

2nd - Hand Auger - Schumacher Auto

3rd - Jig Rod & Reel - St Croix Rods

4th - $50 Cash - Altman Excavating



UPDATED:  June 2012 ~

  The JPD Warrior Project sponsored a free movie for local youth ages 1 - 100 at the Park Theatre "Happy Feet 2" on Feb. 4th and 5th


The JPD Warrior Project donated $500 to the Park Falls Food Pantry to be used towards the purchase of Easter hams.


Co-Sponsored with the Park Falls Chamber of Commerce in giving away Easter baskets for kids at participating businesses.


April 27th, 2012 ~ speaker Lauren Bahn addressed the Chequamegon School District


  Books were handed out to the school districts again.

The Bucket Fillers were at the Chequamegon School in Park Falls, WI on March 21st, 2012.  They addressed the 5-8th grade classes at 8:00 a.m.  The K-4 grades at 9:30 a.m. and the Staff and Counselors at 1:00 p.m.


May 2012 - to the Chequamegon School Park Falls, Mercer, Butternut ~ Olympian Suzy Favor Hamilton. 

~ more images of the event in the photo album ~

Scholarships were given to Ashley Canik, Park Falls and Chelsea Altman, Mercer

~ 2012 Putt Run ~   Holding raffles at the motorcycle ride pit stops the Putt Run Girls raised over $2000 donated to the JPD Warrior Project! Thank you!! (more images in the photo album)


7th Annual 2012 Justin Donner Memorial Fisheree

It was held at Donner's Bay Resort on the Turtle Flambeau Flowage, Butternut, WI

January 28, 2012

7:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

More images in the photo album



QPR stands for Question, Persuade and Refer, three steps anyone can learn to help prevent suicide. Just like CPR, QPR is an emergency response to someone in crisis and can save lives. QPR is the most widely taught gatekeeper training program in the United States, and more than 725,000 adults have been trained in classroom settings in more than 48 states.

The JPD Warrior Project is PROUD to be sponsors of the QPR training program.  Check the local listings in the Park Falls, WI area papers for upcoming classes.  They will also be announced on this website when dates have been established.  Thank you.















the 5th Quarter

After each home high school football game  the JPD Warrior Project sponsors free pizzas at The Corner Rock Youth Center, for the kids!   Located on Highway 13 across from the Public Library.  



2nd Annual 2011 Suicide Awareness Walk

Registration and beginning of walk is held at the Chequamegon High School parking lot on September 10, 2011
 Walk to show awareness, seek support or show in memory of. 
Registration forms are available through the Park Falls Herald and area businesses.

Registration fee is $15.00 (includes a tee-shirt)

Guest speaker and refreshments

any questions? Call


Jane: 715-762-2956






6th Annual Justin Donner Memorial Fisheree

held at Donner's Bay Resort, Butternut, Wi
on the Turtle Flambeau Flowage
JANUARY 29, 2011  ~  7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.



~~~ donations ~~~

The JPD Warrior Project donated it's time and helping hands for the 2009 Community Christmas Dinner by cooking turkeys, delivering meals and helping in the kitchen for the event. 

The JPD Warrior Project donated the candy which was distributed by the Park Falls Fire Department and Park Falls Police Department during Halloween 2009

During the Flambeau Rama festivities of 2009 the JPD Warrior Project sponsored the Frog Jumping Contest ~ providing trophies for all the winners. 

MONTHLY: The JPD Warrior Project, Inc.  sponsors  $100 monthly  to the Corner Rock Youth Center for them to use as needed.  Starting in Sept. of 2010 the JPD Warrior Project is sponsoring the 5th quarter ~ free pizza after the home football games to youth in attendance.



May 5, 2009 ~ Jeff Yalden will be doing 3 sessions at the Park Falls High School gymnasium.  Invitation includes the school districts of Park Falls, Butternut, Mercer, Glidden and Phillips. 

Elementary Level ~ 10:00 a.m.
Middle School & High School ~ 1:00 p.m.
Open Public Session ~ 6:00 p.m.




~~~ Donations ~~~
Corner Rock ~ Youth Outreach Christian Center in Park Falls
The JPD Warrior Project made a fuel assistance in the amount of $1200.00 for the months of December 2008 through April 2009.

  The JPD Warrior Project also sponsored a live band for the Center.


The JPD Warrior Project makes donations of meat or whatever food products the Lord's Cupboard is in need of on a monthly basis.  Pictured here are members Mark Wagner and Cari Jeske.

December 2008 through April 2009 - $1220.00



LORDS CUPBOARD:  Sept. 2008 the JPD Warrior Project donated $200.00 worth of hamburger to the Lord's Cupboard Food Pantry in Park Falls. 

Pictured are JPD Warrior Project members Mark Wagner and Jeff "JD" Donner



Lord's Cupboard:  October 2008  Donation of hamburger was made.

November 2008 Donation of chicken to the Lord's Cupboard.

December 2008 Donation of turkey to the Lord's Cupboard.

January 2009  Donation of pork to the Lord's Cupboard.


Scholarship: January 2009

Payment was made to 2008 recipient of the Justin Donner Memorial Scholarship Fund, Megan Szymik.  This scholarship is for a student that is continuing an education in the field of Psychology or Psychiatry and Human Understanding. 

$500.00 will be going toward another recipient at the end of the 2009 school year.


The JPD Warrior Project purchased books for the Middle School on Self Esteem for the fall sesson on 2009


Tents were purchased for use at the annual fisheree held the last weekend of each January.



White Buffalo Knife brings message of strength, hope, caring to students.
George Tresnak
The Park Falls Herald

PARK FALLS -- A consultant whose legal name is Arnold Thomas, but who relies on his tribal name from Shoshone-Paiute origins to help impart a combined message of strength, hope, and resilience, presented that message to a large student audience in the Park Falls High School gym on Wednesday, Sept. 10.

White Buffalo Knife took about an hour-and-a-half to talk about a grim subject with seventh-through 12th-grade students of Park Falls, Butternut, Glidden and Mercer schools, who together filled one entire side of the gymnasium bleachers.  He was brought to the school from the Mosinee airport about an hour before by Jeff Donner, who along with Jane Donner, maintain a website,, which they began with the help of relatives and friends after their son, Justin Donner, committed suicide on Jan. 30, 2005.

The narrative on the webite, which includes suicide hotline telephone numbers, empathizes with anyone feeling the kind of seemingly unbearable pain that White buffalo Knife later described in his presentation.

As he spoke, White Buffalo Knife frequently urged his computer savvy audience to avail themselves of the website for help if they are feeling the kind of pain that he later described.  He also frequently called the students' attention to the teachers and counselors present, citing them also as caring people willing and ready to help anyone feeling such pain, along with family members and friends.  He implored his young audience never to try to deal with such feelings alone. 

If the students' mood was grim at the beginning of the presentation due to the subject of suicide that was scheduled to be discussed, that soon changed as White Buffalo Knife led them through one physical exercise after another that obviously was intended to encourage increased awareness of their own bodies' versatility, their senses and people around them.

The cheerful mood resulting from the group participation was only briefly suspended when White buffalo Knife told them of his own suicide attemt with a firearm many years ago that left him permanently blind but, ash he came to realize during a long periof of recover, capable of helping many people through personal appearances in the United States and other countries to avoid what happened to him.

In a brief interview prior to his presentation, he told of his opposition to mass media glamorization of suicide, which he has seen in some media reports.  He told the students of opportunities that were ahead of him as a high school student aspiring to be a championship basketball or football player, and the conteracting of those aspirations by feelings of abandonment and pain that he was feeling due to the suicide of a close family member.

He said hunting was one of his favorite pastimes during his young life, but on the day of his suicide attemt in 1988, under the influence of alcohol and drugs, he was so overwhelmed with pain and anger, which is what he thought would happen by placing the muzzle of a hunting weapon under his chin and pulling the trigger.

What happened instead was a struggle to breathe as he swallowed his own blood, resulting in a sudden overwhelming awareness of desperately needing air and of a desire to live.  That desire was later followed by hope, during his long recover, as he began to realize all that he had lost and wanted to regain.

He said that with an acute awareness that he had been give a second chance, the first goal with his newfound hope was to be able to see again, which never happened, but his hope continued and grew as he regained his ability to speak, which was his second greatest hope, and to use his legs and arms.  He realized he was alive for a purpose, a realization that he urged for all individuals in his audience.

He said the despite his blindness, he constantly is reminded of his other physical abilities, the work he now does and the fact that he has a bachelor's degree, is married and has children.  He described that realization on his part and similiar realization by others as an ability to give thanks, which he sees as a prerequisite to being happy.

"Give thanks, enjoy life," he exhorted, and giving thanks, being happy and not worrying were his final message to the students, which he said was very effectively communicated in "The Lion King," as he more firmly impressed that message on his young audience at the end of his presentation with a chant, from "The Lion King," that repeated the words, "don't worry, be happy," in an African dialect and in English.

The groundwork that he laid for that frame of mind during his presentation inclluded relating Einstein's theory of relativity to the reality of the conveying of energy from the sun to the earth and ultimately to all of nature and everyone in the audience.

He described an awareness of that energy on the part of students as an understanding of their own power over their own lives, which requires a recognition on their part that they have the wherewithal to do anything they wish as their life's work,  He noted that there is no word for "can't" in hos own or other American tribal languages.

Several times he referred to the message in "The Lion King" as an extraordinary one of resilience, which he saw as an ability to make full use of one's energy for living a happy, productive life free of anxiety.

As he neared the end of his presentation, he called suicide "wrong" not only for the lives of its victims lost, but for the devastating effect on their families and friends.  Also as his presentation neared an end, he asked the students each to turn to a student next to the, shake that student's hand, and thank that student for being alive.  He then asked the students each to turn to a student behind them and do the same thing. 

Not needing any more encouragement, the students readily complied, some or them also going a bit further by hugging a fellow student.  White Buffalo Knife urged that in developing an awareness of each other, the students become alert to signs that through such gestures as offering to go for a walk with the fellow student and asking whether there was anythingthe student wanted to talk about.  He said if the fellow student accepts the offer and begins to talk, it is very important to listen and then to follow up by helping put the friend into contact with an adult or adults who can help.  He said it became very clear to him during his recovery that there are many people available who are willing to help, and all they need is to be asked. At one point, he likened the cleansing effect of water on earth with a cleansing effect of tears, and explained his people's calling the earth "Mother earth," by saying that only woman is capable of giving life, and as a mother, earth continues to give life.  "No matter what we do to her, she continues to give," he said.

White Buffalo Knife sought to overcome some of the inhibitions that may exist among members of the audience through such exercises as comparing the sound volume of various gender, staff, grade and other groups' repetition, on request, of words like "love," apparently anticipating audience appreciation of the humor in a chorus of gruff voices saying the word when he called for "jocks" to take their turn.

The audience also was amused by a demonstration of White Buffalo Knife's use of his red-tipped cane by his straying a bit away from the podium and then asking the audience to direct him back by using imaginary positions of the hands of the clock.

With a slight reach, he located the podium after a student said "12 o'clock" as the final instruction.  When he connected his cane with the podium, he quipped, "That was more like 12:30."

Although White Buffalo Knife takes his Shoshone-Paiute ancestry very seriously, he allowed a touch of humor in his description of his family heritage by saying that occasional individual strands of red hair among his otherwise long, black hair were traces of Irish ancestry.  Anyone privileged to talk to him in person will immediately feel an interest on his part in all people he comes into contact with by being quizzed on the ethnic origin of that person's last name, and whether that person knows the meaning the name. 

He urged his young audience to become very aware of their ethnic origins, learn about those origins and be proud of them.  He said that along with the cultural identity such aswareness provides, ethnic origins are part of what makes each person unique.

White buffalo Knife operated from Salt Lake City, UT, and is on the road with presentations to various groups from seven to nine months of the year.  He has been doing the presentations for 15 years.

Commenting on the value of the presentation to park Falls and area schools, Guidance Counselor Katie Rybak said that because of the present funding situation for schools, such a presentation would not be possible without the Donner foundation funding.

Jeff Donner said it cost $5,000 in funds from the annual fisheree to bring White Buffalo Knife to Park Falls through Vision in Motion, the New Jersey foundation through which he was recruited to come to Park Falls.  Other speakers were brought to Park Falls through proceeds from the fisheree and donations in the past, and Donner said funds from annual JPD Warrior fisherees in the future will be used for the same purpose.

The next fisheree, the fourth, is scheduled for Jan. 31, 2009, again on the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage.  It was estimated that about 600 people attended the 2007 fisheree.

Jeff Donner is president of an organization, made up of over 20 people, called the JPD Warrior project,  Purpose of the website is partially to help raise funds for events such as the Sept. 10 presentzation to promote attitudes on the part of young people to prevent despair that could lead to suicide.

The website was created by Jeff Donner's sister-in-law, Melody Donner, and Eric Moland of Winter.  It lists a depression hotline, a suicide hotline, a national crisis center hotline, and a line for people who "just want to talk."

The annual fisheree is put on with the help of many volunteers.  Besides ice fishing events for prizes, it features raffle drawings for many donated items and also features a disk jockey and fireworks.

Anyone wishing to help with the event in the future or with the organization's efforts at any time can volunteer by contacting Jeff and Jane Donner at W8451 County Road E, Park Falls, WI 54552