Farmer who donated mask to New York honored with degree

Gov. Laura Kelly and K-State president award bachelor's degree to Troy farmer.


State News

May 7, 2020 - 9:25 AM

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) —  A degree has been bestowed upon a retired Kansas farmer who shipped one of his five N-95 masks to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo despite worries for his wife (who has one lung) amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly and Kansas State University President Richard Myers awarded the bachelor’s degree Tuesday to Dennis Ruhnke, of Troy, Kansas. Ruhnke was just two credits away from earning his degree in 1971 when he left school after the death of his father so he could help take care of his mother and the family farm. 

Kelly said that Ruhnke “perfectly encapsulates K-State’s democratic mandate to be of service to people.” 

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