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Rides for Vets fundraiser offers a way to honor a veteran

November 4, 2012

Photo submitted This is a sample ornament created by the Elkwood Arts program to help support the Rides for Vets fundraiser. Area residents are invited to help honor the veteran(s) in their lives with an ornament to be displayed on the tree in front of the courthouse all month long.  

The annual holiday to remember veterans is quickly approaching and the Rides for Vets program in Elk and Cameron counties is offering a way to honor the veteran(s) in your life.
"We were looking for a way to honor military service people on Veterans Day while giving loved ones a memento to hold on to after the fact," said Kellie Rusciolelli, Senior Volunteer Program Coordinator. "Elkwood Arts was the perfect place to request help in creating ornaments."
Once the wooden ornament is purchased it will then be displayed for all to see.
"The ornaments will be displayed on the tree in the courthouse," Rusciolelli said. "The public is encouraged to stop by and view the tree, which will be on display from Nov. 8 through the end of the month."
Rides for Vets is hoping to make this an annual display by honoring the county's military with a new ornament each year. Ornaments are on sale until Tuesday, Nov. 6. Proceeds help support the Rides for Vets program, which offers a vital link for area veterans to travel to out-of-town Veterans Affairs medical facilities to receive comprehensive medical treatment.
"Fundraising is an ongoing need for R4V, as the vans are in constant use," said Rusciolelli. "Ornaments can be purchased for any person who served or is serving in any branch of the military."
Rides for Vets is continually seeking volunteers to help serve. Currently, they are in need of someone to oversee fundraising, which would include developing and carrying out different activities throughout the year.
"Van drivers are another ongoing need," Rusciolelli said. "There are several dedicated drivers carrying a big load and we would like get more drivers onboard to help even out that process."
Order forms and volunteer information may be obtained through the Rides for Vets office at (814) 772-2783, by email at or by contacting Kellie Rusciolelli at the Senior Volunteer Program at (814) 776-0428 or

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