Church provides donation to veterans’ group

Providing comfort and support to injured men and women returning home after serving in combat zones overseas is the number one priority of the Wounded Warriors Project.

The international organization began more than 10 years ago as a grassroots, charitable, nonprofit agency providing transitional housing to single, post-9/11 combat veterans with traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress.

It has since expanded its services and programs.

On Sunday, members of the Pahrump Valley United Methodist Church bestowed the Wounded Warriors Project with a check in the amount of $531.25 to support services in the Pahrump Valley.

Retired Marine Veteran Reggie Knight said there are hundreds of wounded warriors living in the Pahrump Valley.

Knight, a member of the church, accepted the donation on behalf of the Wounded Warrior Project and will forward it on to the organization’s national headquarters.

“Most of the military men and women who are in the service and came back are wounded warriors,” he said. “We have over 400 wounded warriors in our Disabled American Veterans Chapter 15 here in Pahrump. Anyone who was disabled is considered a wounded warrior.”

The story about how the donation came about, according to Knight, touches the heart, as several kids of his fellows parishioners at the church took up regular donations more than a month ago.

“In five weeks the kids collected more than $500,” he said. “During the time that we were collecting for our regular services, they would come along with little cups and everybody put all their change in. It brought it up to over $500. It was just awesome and they will also be doing that for other programs in the community.”

Knight, who is also a wounded warrior, suffered from severe health issues after returning home from Vietnam decades ago.

He said he was exposed to the chemical defoliant Agent Orange, a known carcinogen and is 100 percent disabled.

Knight noted veterans from more recent conflicts are in a similar situation in terms of their health, and the Wounded Warrior Project can assist in their recovery.

“I was sprayed with Agent Orange and it presented all these other problems that I have,” he said. “In the Iraq War and the war in Kuwait, there was an oil spill which was set on fire and these guys were breathing all of that stuff in and it affected them. They got back home and they had all types of respiratory problems and other ailments. The Wounded Warrior Project really helps out because it put them in various rehabilitation programs and in touch with other services.”

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com.

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