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A new flag is raised Wednesday at Grande Ronde Retirement Residence in celebration of the money the center raised for local veterans. The retirement center sold pies for a Fourth of July fundraiser. (Chris Baxter/The Observer)
What’s more American than pie? Selling said pie to help local veterans.
The Grande Ronde Retirement Residence recently raised more than $3,000 for the Eastern Oregon Military Veterans Fund during its Fourth of July pie fundraiser.
Offering apple, peach and cherry pies, the retirement center’s kitchen received so many pie orders they had to extend the fundraiser past July 4.
“I’m proud. These guys did a great job,” said Byron Whipple, Union County veterans service officer.
In a short flag raising ceremony Wednesday morning, Grande Ronde Retirement Director Jessie Huxoll presented a check to Lonnie Meyers of American Legion Post 43 for $3,028.
Whipple said the funds are easily accessible to help veterans across Eastern Oregon with rent, utilities, medical bills and other expenses, but the fund predominantly goes to help homeless veterans in the region.
“There’s no bureaucracy involved,” Whipple said. All that’s needed is two signatures and someone can be helped, he said.
Huxoll said she hopes the retirement center shows respect for veterans daily and plans to continue the fundraiser as an annual event.
“This is just a little piece of the pie,” she said. “We thank our community for allowing us to give back.”
Kathy Clark, marketing director at the center, helped come up with the idea and deliver pies.
The fundraiser wasn’t too much work, she said, but she did see “lots of smiles delivering pies.”
Clark said Grande Ronde Retirement got so much positive feedback that they were able to raise their original goal from $2,000 to $3,000.
“It made me feel really good to know we were doing something that means so much to people,” she said. “Next year, it’s double or nothing.”