By Jen Bakken
DELANO, MN Many area residents know her as “the lady from Love Inc.” but who is Terri Harris?
Harris is on a mission to help neighbors in need, has enough compassion to do so, and is known to drop everything to pray with someone.
Harris grew up in the Hamel area, and graduated from Orono High School.
Currently, Harris and her husband, Scott, live in Maple Plain and have four children, the youngest of which is 18 years old, and are a very spiritual family.
In July 2001, Harris was involved in a serious car accident. Harris was in the back seat, her husband was driving, and in the passenger seat was her brother-in-law while they traveled on Interstate 94, near Weaver Lake Road.
A Mustang hit a small Honda and sent it into the Harris’ two-door Blazer like a bullet hitting them head on.
All three were pronounced dead at the scene, but miraculously they survived.
“One of the paramedics came to the hospital to visit me,” said Harris. “He said he’d been doing this for a long time, that we were all dead, he couldn’t believe it and asked how I think this happened. I told him I’ve got a big God.”
Her husband had broken teeth, a broken nose, and other broken bones. A broken back was what her brother-in-law suffered with. Harris herself had serious injuries including crushed limbs and a head injury.
Harris endured a long hospital stay, recovery time in a nursing home, a titanium leg, and she has had 21 surgeries.
“The kid who caused the accident only had a broken turn signal,” she said. “But we are all fine now just a little remodeled.”
Because her husband couldn’t return to his engineering position after the accident, the couple decided this was their “do over.”
The moved to another home in Maple Plain without stairs, and Scott began working for MBE, Inc. in Delano.
In 2006, Harris began working part-time for Love Inc. Heartland, and within two years became the full-time executive director.
Shortly after, Harris was diagnosed with breast cancer. Initially she was told the cancer was aggressive and invasive.
“When they went to do a double mastectomy it (cancer) was gone and the doctor said it was mysterious,” she said. “I told him that’s pronounced miraculous.”
With her strong faith in the Lord, Harris continues on her mission to help people in Delano and surrounding communities through Love, Inc.
Love INC Heartland is a neighbor-helping-neighbor organization. It partners with 19 area churches to assist neighbors in need.
Love INC Heartland is located at 318 Railroad Avenue in Delano. It has a thrift store that is open for neighbors in need and the public Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
For more information about Love Inc. call (763) 972-6547 or visit www.loveincheartland.org.