In honor of local servicemen
Donald S. Reinert Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7293 Auxiliary, Egypt, held a special check presentation ceremony Feb. 4 at the VFW headquarters, 5209 Springmill Road.
Since January 2019, the Post’s auxiliary has been gathering funds to raise a service dog through Tails of Valor, a Coopersburg-based organization that trains therapy dogs to serve military veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries.
With an original fundraising goal of $5,000, the group hoped to foster one dog through Tails of Valor. However, an outpouring of support over the past year allowed the group to raise $17,854.60, which will go toward the training of two new service dogs.
In a speech given before the check presentation, Bryan Brandmeir, of Post 7293, said the money raised was a result of the hard work of the Post’s active members, the auxiliary board and auxiliary President Deb Smith.
As with all of the dogs it trains, Tails of Valor will name both new dogs after local veterans who were killed in service to their country.
The first dog will be named after World War II veteran Donald S. Reinert, for whom the VFW is also named. Reinert was killed in Japan in 1945 at age 20.
The second dog will be named after Jesse Reed, a 2002 graduate of Whitehall High School who was killed in Afghanistan in 2010.
Brandmeir said the auxiliary hopes its choice to name the dogs after veterans of both past and present wars will serve as “a reminder to those in the community that freedom isn’t free and that young men and women continue to step forward to protect the very freedoms and institutions that the United States of America was built upon.”