Annie’s House lives out legacy of North Dakotan who died in 9/11

Local News

This Saturday marks 20 years since 9/11, and the legacy of one North Dakotan who died in the tragedy lives on.

Ann Nicole Nelson was from Stanley, North Dakota, and in 2001, was working on the 104th floor of the World Trade Center when the tower came down.

After her family got her belongings, they found Ann’s bucket list, which includes items like “Be a good friend, Read every day and Buy a house in North Dakota.”

Out of that list came Annie’s House, an adaptive recreation center that opened in 2012 in Bottineau to help people with disabilities go skiing and enjoy outdoor activities year-round at no cost.

Program Coordinator Rachael Buss says Ann wanted to help people accomplish things that might be challenging for them, and that’s part of the program’s mission.

“On her bucket list, there were only 36 items listed out of her top 100, and 37 was listed, but it was blank. So we kind of use #37 as — ‘How can we keep honoring Ann? How can this program keep moving forward? It’s blank. What do we think would really support the mission of making the world a more inclusive place?'” Buss said.

Annie’s House serves about 450 people every year, including those with disabilities and veterans.

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