By Shannon Johnson
Fallon Medical Complex is welcoming a new Occupational Therapist to their Rehab Department. “A lot of people say that Occupational Therapy is the profession to help people become more independent by giving them tools and equipment to do tasks in their every day lives,” explains the new team member, MiKenna O’Donnell.
O’Donnell is a Baker native. She was born to parents Kim and Vance O’Donnell and raised for her whole childhood in Baker with her two older brothers Payton and Derrick. Before graduating high school in 2013, she was an active member in her school, participating in Student Union, Student Council, FFA, Close Up, and FCCLA. She also played basketball her freshman year and competed in Speech and Drama and golf throughout high school as well as being the volleyball manager.
After graduating high school, O’Donnell moved to Bismarck to attend college at the University of Mary. She knew right away that she wanted to go into Occupational Therapy after a basketball injury sparked her interest in the field at a young age. “When I was in 8th grade I had to get a shoulder surgery and I participated in rehab with Cynthia Tronstad,” she mentioned.
O’Donnell graduated in April of 2018 and continued to finish her clinicals in Bismarck before officially becoming an Occupational Therapist in December of 2018. She moved to Marmarth, ND and began to work at Fallon Medical Complex. “Before I went to college, I was getting told that I should come back here because there wasn’t a full-time,” she acknowledged. “I like the small community and my family is here so then I get to see them too.”
O’Donnell is a rancher’s girlfriend, so during her down time she likes to help her boyfriend, Steven, with things like fixing fence, feeding the cattle and horses, calving and branding. When they aren’t busy on the ranch, she can be found spending a lot of her time with her family and friends as well as getting outdoors.
“I’m glad that I started here at Fallon Medical Complex,” smiled O’Donnell. “There are a lot of familiar faces.”