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Warrior Run helps families of veterans
October 31, 2013 Jerry Purvis   

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The fifth annual Warrior Run is scheduled for this Saturday to help support the ongoing needs of veterans returning from overseas deployment.

The annual event features both a 5K and 10K run and a 5K walk. It starts with registration at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 2 at the Monument Shadows Golf Course clubhouse and runs through 8:45 a.m. Registration fee is $25 for adults, $15 for children age 5 – 15 and children under 5 are free. A family rate also applies with a two adults for $50 and $10 for each child.

Starting time for the runners is 9 a.m. Saturday and the walkers start at 9:10 a.m. Participants are encouraged to wear red, white and blue as a sign of support for the nation’s veterans.

“The Warrior Run was started in memory of some of our local military men who died overseas,” said Brad Van Pelt, one of the event’s organizers. “All of the money we raise goes to the Veterans and Military Families Emergency Relief Organization.”

The local group was formed after reports became common that returning veterans and their families were experiencing emergency situations and were unable to get the immediate assistance they needed.

When soldiers return from deployment, their families are often stressed by finances, fluctuating income and just the stress of returning from a war zone. The organization helps with emergency needs to help these veterans make the transition from being at war to being home.

Van Pelt said some of the funds have helped local veterans who are attending Western Nebraska Community College. They’ve helped with car repairs, utility bills, tuition and other needs when their veterans’ benefits were slow in being processed. “It’s kind of a catchall fund to help veterans in any way we can.”

Chris Wolf, vice president of the Veterans and Military Families Emergency Relief Organization, said except money they spend to maintain their nonprofit status, all the funds remain in the local area for veterans.

“Veterans are very proud people and don’t want to have to ask for things,” Wolf said. “They sometimes have to make that request for the sake of their families. They’re very grateful for the support they receive. We can see the sense of relief on their faces when they know things will be taken care of.”

Veterans and Military Families Emergency Relief Organization is supported entirely through grants, fundraising events and donations. Information is available at wyobraskavetshelp.org.
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