The VFW Post 3762 Riders in Washington Court House announced its efforts recently to refrain from saying no to those veterans who need help with the “We Never Say No” fundraising event.
The Riders are a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that prides itself on how it takes care of the Fayette County veterans. Since its inception, the group has continued to take on projects and according to the president, Duke Hanscel, the requests continue to increase. After the group had considered “needing to say no” due to lack of resources, or before the group was forced to remove the free meals, Hanscel and Mike Slocum decided they needed to try something else to obtain the funding.
“We do a bit around the county including building wheelchair ramps for disabled veterans, helping disabled children by purchasing mattresses and other items for them, we help vets with electric bills and other expenses and we offer free meals for veterans throughout the year at times,” Hanscel said during an interview Tuesday. “Since the beginning, the riders have raised and spent $30,000 to continue providing these free services. When we build a ramp, we do not charge the veteran a single thing. We take care of the assembly and construction, and we purchase all of the materials.”
The idea then came to approach area businesses after seeing the incredible feedback and support of their group from residents. The duo first visited Ranchers Roast Beef in Washington C.H. and spoke with Fred Wollscheid to see what could be done. He jumped on board and together they quickly formed this new fundraising event. Throughout the week of July 1-8, various businesses will be offering a part of their sales and other fundraising monies to the VFW Riders.
“From July 1 through the 8, Ranchers will be giving us 20 percent of the breakfast sales,” Hanscel said. “The Rusty Keg, thanks to Brian and Kelly Pettit, will be giving us 20 percent of sales on July 5 if you have a coupon or mention the program. Streetside 62, on July 7, will be giving us 10 percent of sales and will be providing raffle items for the bike night on that evening. We went and saw Todd Evans, who is a veteran, at Quali-Tee Design and they designed and donated 100 ‘Never Say No’ t-shirts and set us up with an online store for our merchandise. Red’s Customs Cycles, owned by Gary Benson, will be giving us 10 percent of the labor that week. Court House Custom, co-owned by D.J. Jenkins, will be giving us $5 per shirt they sell that week. Le Ella Lanes, thanks to the Amore, will be holding a bowl-a-thon on July 3 to raise money. Finally, we had Gusweiler and Doug Marine Motors donate cash to help with our programs.”
The Bowl-a-Thon will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Cost is $20 and includes pizza, a soft drink and three hours of unlimited bowling. Hanscel also wanted to extend an invitation to other businesses in the county who would like to take part in this fundraising week. If interested contact Hanscel at (740) 505-4459 or Slocum at (740) 505-2632.
Hanscel thanked many individuals for their efforts with the Riders. Between the women and men’s auxiliaries, the DAV, the Crabtrees, the Kuelbers, Home Depot and many others, including community residents, the group has helped veterans all over the county and it is thanks to them that the group will continue to help. Hanscel said without all of the support, they would never have gotten anywhere.
For more information about the Riders or to volunteer and help, contact Hanscel.