In an effort to support Delaware military veterans, local animal rescue group Grass Roots Rescue this weekend is hosting 4 Paws Got Your 6, in the hopes of raising money to train a service dog.
“We’ve always had the utmost respect for people who have served,” said Karli Crenshaw, co-founder of Grass Roots Rescue Society (GRR), an all-volunteer, 501(c)(3) nonprofit group founded in 2013 to rescue dogs and cats.
“I started reading about different military organizations and ways to help. PTSD caught our attention and pulled at our heartstrings. We wanted to do something to try to help individuals who suffer from that. We kind of feel the government has let a lot of these people down, similar to shelter animals, you know. They’ve been let down by people, by the system.”
The event will be held on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 1 to 6 p.m. at American Legion Post 28 in Millsboro.
During the event, at least two female veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will speak about the disorder.
Event sponsors include Support our Soldiers Foundation, Atlantic Refrigeration, Tripaw’s Pet Pantry, Get Your Wag On Pet Services and Good Dog Inn, as well as organizations including People’s Place, Frets For Vets, Home of the Brave, Ace Peer Center, Stand Down, Supportive Services/Veteran Housing, Delmarva K9, Hasslers Helping Hands Foundation, Tripaws Pet Pantry, Vietnam Veterans of America, Compassionate Hearts and Samantha Hudran Massage.
“There will be four bands, three food trucks… We have two or three people coming to paint faces for the kids. We’ll have puppies there that will be available for adoption. We’ll have vendors there from everything from Discovery Toys, Lula Roe and Tupperware... We have something for everybody,” said Crenshaw. “We’ve gotten a really good response. Everybody seems to be pretty excited about it and onboard.”
Event T-shirts will be available for purchase the day of the event for $22. Half of all the monies raised that day will be donated to Rebuilding Warriors.
“They pair veterans with service dogs. The Vietnam Veterans Association Post 880 has been fundraising for things,” she explained. ‘‘Riedel K9 in Dover has a puppy there that’s in the first stage of training through Rebuilding Warriors. He will be in training for about a year, and then, upon completion, he will be paired with a veteran.
“We teamed up with the Vietnam Veterans Association and put our money in with theirs to go toward the training of the dog, whose name is Bud. The training costs anywhere from $8,000 to $10,000.”
Crenshaw said there are four veterans in Kent County who have been identified as being in need of a service dog.
“So, they’ll be screening then to see who is most in need at this time.”
Crenshaw said GGR hopes the community will attend the Oct. 14 event and help support local veterans.
“Everyone should attend,” she said. “It’s going to be a good time for a good cause.”
American Legion Post 28 is located at 31768 Legion Road in Millsboro. For more information about Grass Roots Rescue, visit www.grrde.org.
By Maria Counts