Marion VFW and American Legion Host Fundraisers for The Ritual Team

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By WSIL Manager

WSIL TV -- The Marion VFW Post 1301 and American Legion Post 147 held the events to raise money for their Ritual Team.

The Ritual Team is a not for profit non-charitable corporation that provides military funeral ceremonies for veterans that have passed away. The team provides a commander, a chaplin, a bugle player, a 21 gun salute. They also present the flag to the surviving family members. The Ritual Team provides Military Honors for around 100 funerals each year, all while working off of donations only.

Ritual Team commander Larry Largent says, "We're always short on money. The only money we get is donations from the funeral home or families when we provide our military services. It's very helpful but sometimes isn't enough."

The team's main concern is the rising cost of diesel fuel and the maintenance on their 22 passenger Blue Bird Bus, the vehicle that takes them to and from each funeral.

The Helping Hero's poker run left from the Marion VFW Post 1301 at noon. From there the motorcyclists continued on to other VFWs and American Legion Posts throughout Southern Illinois before ending back at the Marion VFW for dinner and live entertainment provided by Patrick Lee Beasley. The golf scramble teed off at 1 p.m. with fifteen teams of four players.

All together the two events raised around $2,200. The money will go directly to the Ritual Team. If you missed out on Saturday's fun but would still like to make a donation, you can send your donation to The Marion VFW Post 1301 Ritual team at 201 W. Longstreet, Marion, IL 62959. Organizers say any and all donations are welcome and greatly appreciated.
Marion Regional
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