As Memorial Day approaches, we are reminded of all of the sacrifices the men and women of our military have made. Those sacrifices were honored Saturday afternoon at Currie Ford of Valparaiso with the 2nd Annual Folds of Honor Memorial.
The event took place at the Valparaiso dealership and welcomed hundreds of people from the community to honor the veterans who have been seriously injured or have lost their lives while serving in the military.
“This is our 2nd annual Folds of Honor Memorial ceremony,” said Kelley Stiles of the Folds of Honor Advertising Department. “Today is all about raising money for the families of fallen or disabled veterans and showing support for our military.”
Folds of Honor is a national scholarship organization dedicated to providing scholarship money to the families of veterans killed or wounded while serving their country. It began with tragedy and heart break, but has now grown into a foundation that gives veteran families hope and support in trying times.
“Folds of Honor was founded 10 years ago by Major Dan Rooney, who was an F-16 fighter pilot,” said Bob Carnagey, Local Host of Folds of Honor in Northwest Indiana. “He was carrying the remains of a soldier who was killed in battle and when he saw the soldier’s family and his young son receive the casket, his life was changed forever.”
Since it was founded 10 years ago, the organization has raised money for over 10,000 children in all 50 states and shown the country how important it is to support veterans and their families.
“One percent of our population serves in the military and they are what holds our country together,” Carnagey said. “They allow us to have the freedoms that we have. It’s almost Memorial Day and for many people, it’s just one day each year. But for the families of fallen or disabled veterans, every day is Memorial Day for them. So it’s incredibly important to support them and to honor all that they have done for us and our country.”
The organization has partnered with Currie Ford of Valparaiso for two years now, a show of support for a cause that is so close and important to the dealership.
“We are so passionate about giving back,” Ha Khong, Event Coordinator for Currie Motors. “We are so dedicated to making sure that we give back to the community that has been so supportive of us since we came here in 2015. We’ve gotten nothing but love from the community, including the Folds of Honor Foundation, so we want to make sure that we support them and all they do for veterans.”
So for the second year in a row, Folds of Honor and Currie Ford came together for a fun, inspiring, and charitable morning. The event began with a Color Guard ceremony presented by the local Boys Scouts Wolf Group. The group of young boys paraded the Boys Scouts flag, the Indiana State flag, and the American flag, then presented Leo Sfikas, General Manager of Currie Ford, a folded flag with the names of every person who has received scholarship money from Folds of Honor.
The event continued with a car show, complete with newer and older cars like Mustangs or old Volkswagen Beetles. Guests bought raffle tickets hoping to win items like baseball and hockey memorabilia and gift certificates. Guests walked up and down the aisles, checking out the cars or the authentic army vehicles, eating delicious food, and hoping to win an awesome raffle item, all for a great cause.
“I wanted to be here to support Bob Carnagey and Folds of Honor,” said Patrick Truax, owner of Valpo Viennas in downtown Valparaiso. “He does so much for the community and its veterans, so really, it’s the least I could do to come here today.”
Memorial Day is this Monday, so what better way to celebrate and honor the sacrifices soldiers and veterans have made than with an entire community coming together for a great cause. Every dollar spent Saturday afternoon went to scholarships for veteran families, just one of the ways the Northwest Indiana community is continuing legacies and memories of our veterans.
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