Monday, March 23, 2009

Annual Fundraiser Supports Local Troops

Helen Denton, former secretary to General Dwight D. Eisenhower, (left) takes a break from the fun to pose with Linda Mosley, bus driver and organizer of the cookout.

The smell of hotdogs roasting on the grill and displays of red, white and blue in the bus shop could only mean one thing. It was time for the annual Cookout for the Troops hosted by the Fayette County School System’s Transportation Department.

Seven years and counting, the department has hosted the fundraiser to generate funds to purchase gift cards for the county’s men and women serving in the U.S. military. Approximately, 300 people attended this year’s event that netted $2,500. All proceeds collected will enable the transportation department to send gift cards to deployed troops throughout the year as well as provide Christmas gifts.

Fayette residents who have a friend or loved one serving in the military can request to have a gift card sent to their solider by mailing his or her name and address to: The Troops, 210 Stonewall Avenue, Fayetteville, GA 30214. Please include a local contact and telephone number.

Each March, the county’s school bus drivers and monitors work countless hours organizing the cookout, going door to door to Fayette businesses soliciting prizes for drawings and monetary donations. The drivers also provide the food and desserts that are enjoyed by those who attend.

Businesses throughout the county generously supported this year’s cookout by donating prizes that included handmade quilts, rugs, jewelry, gift certificates and artwork. Those supporting the event were Autera Health Clinic, Classic Landscaping, Trinity Air, Clearly Fun Soap, Bella Bronze Tanning, Mary Kay, Permanent Beauty Solution, Images by Rainey, Publix 799, Andy’s Nursery, Petro Flame, J&J Grading, ACE Hardware, Brooks Hair Boutique, Braelinn Village Family Dentistry, Restored, Play It Again Sports, Second Hand Sam, Odds & Ends Carpentry, Margaret Sullivan (flower pen lady), Juice+, Queen’s Jewels, Kedron Merle Norman, Allan Vigil Ford, Clarks Pressure Washing and Painting, Images Gallery and Studio, Wags to Whiskers, The Way of the Horse, Camm Inspections, Hudson Produce, Pearl Lady, Pinson Trucking, Red Neck Gourmet, Big Daddy’s Oyster Bar, Stevie B’s Pizza and Jafra Cosmetics.

Students in Fayette Middle's after school art class helped promote the fundraiser by designing posters that were used to advertise the cookout. The transportation department gave lollipops to the students as a token of appreciation for their efforts.

As the years go by, more people are learning about the fundraiser and are becoming involved. This year veterans from the Riverdale VFW Post 3650 were in attendance along with a very special member of their post, Helen Denton. Denton, who joined the Army in 1943 at the age of 21, played a major role in the history of the United States. Serving as General Dwight D Eisenhower’s secretary, she typed the plans for the liberation of Europe, better known as D-Day.

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