Soldiers receive two salutes

COLUMBIA CITY — It wasn’t Memorial Day or Veteran’s Day. It wasn’t even Armed Forces Day. But a national holiday was not necessary community members to take time out of their Saturday to honor those who have and who are serving the country.Salute a Soldier was held Saturday in Columbia City. The event was planned in order to raise funds for Associated Churches Military Families Ministry, which distributes aid to soldiers in need.Gretchen Wood, an employee of Shindigz in South Whitley, launched an initiative to bring people together to honor soldiers.“It’s just a way for us to be able to give back to the soldiers who have given so much to us,” Wood said. Wood’s event was part of her community service work encouraged by Shindigz. The Journey Program was started by the company to persuade its employees to find ways to give back to the community.“I never would have tackled something like this if it wasn’t for this program,” Wood said. “But now I look at it and I am so thankful and grateful for all the people that have joined in to make this possible.”But Wood is not finished. The event will be held again July 20 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tractor Supply Company in Columbia City.“So far we have netted $1,100,” Wood said. “We are already in the middle of planning a 5K for July. We hope to get even more veterans and soldiers out for the Saturday in July.”To read the rest of this story, see the June 4 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook and twitter.