In honor of his Jan. 10 inauguration, Gov.-elect Nathan Deal is calling for a day of service by Georgians.
Debbie McCord, a former chairwoman of the Columbia County Republican Party, is seeking volunteers to answer that call by helping wounded members of the armed services, including Harlem soldier Sgt. Darryl Wallace.
"The whole point behind the project is we can't solve Georgia's problems with government money," McCord said. "We've got to all get in, and pitch in, and help our neighbors."
On Saturday, McCord said, she will coordinate volunteers working to complete a fence at Wallace's home, build a play set for his 5-year-old son, make minor sheetrock repairs needed after the installation of hydraulic doors and do some small landscape projects.
Wallace was critically injured in Afghanistan in June 2007 when an improvised explosive device detonated beneath his armored vehicle. He lost his legs, among other injuries, and suffers from post-traumatic stress syndrome.
The Wallaces' Ashley Place home was given to them in April 2009 by Homes for Our Troops, a national organization that builds adapted homes for wounded soldiers.
McCord said she went to Laurie Ott, the executive director of the CSRA Wounded Warrior Care Project, looking for veterans or service members in need.
"I think it is a neat idea," Ott said of the initiative. "It is wonderful to call attention to wounded warriors on a day of service, and we're very thankful."
McCord's group of volunteers also will be doing small projects for other wounded service members, such as removing downed trees from yards. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact McCord at (706) 833-4731 or email@example.com.
Volunteers should bring their own safety glasses and any small hand tools they can, McCord said.
Ott said the Wounded Warrior Project also offers numerous opportunities to help injured veterans through a variety of programs, including veteran mentoring, education, employment and marriage enrichment; the Fischer House; and the Active Duty Rehabilitation Unit at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center.
"Wounded warriors is not a Republican or a Democratic issue; it is an American issue," Ott said. "To have folks get behind our service members is just the right thing to do."
For information about the Wounded Warrior Project or volunteer opportunities, call (706) 434-1707 or visit www.projectaugusta.org.
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