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Help Heal Veterans Hosts #VigilForValor to Honor the Fallen Ahead of Memorial Day

#VigilforValor Candle

Community Craft Events and Virtual Campaign to Honor Veterans and Active-Duty Military Lost to War and Suicide

Our hope in hosting #VigilforValor, now in its third year, is to give people the opportunity to connect with their community, while shining a light on the remarkable lives of their loved ones.”
— Capt. Joe McClain, USN (ret.), CEO, Help Heal Veterans

WINCHESTER, CALIF., U.S.A., May 8, 2023/ -- In honor of Memorial Day, Help Heal Veterans (Heal Vets), is hosting #VigilForValor, a series of local community craft events and a virtual campaign beginning today to honor service members who have fallen in battle or to suicide.

During community craft events that run through Memorial Day on Monday, May 30, and taking place in San Antonio and Temple, Texas; Maywood, Ill.; and Fresno, Calif., veterans, active-duty military, and members of surrounding communities will gather to remember their loved ones by crafting candleholders in their honor. In addition, Heal Vets is inviting the public to participate by sharing both personal stories and stories from their communities on social media using #VigilForValor. Help Heal Veterans will highlight stories of fallen service members on social media and on its website.

“For those of us who have served, Memorial Day is a sacred day, a time of remembrance and reflection, and a day to honor those who have paid the ultimate price,” said Capt. Joe McClain, USN (ret.), CEO, Help Heal Veterans. “Our hope in hosting #VigilforValor, now in its third year, is to give people the opportunity to connect with their community, while shining a light on the remarkable lives of their loved ones.”

Individuals attending #VigilForValor community craft events will create customizable candleholders incorporating photographs, drawings, patches, or other personal items to commemorate those they wish to honor. Those without someone to remember are encouraged to reach out to their community, school, or place of worship, or search local news sources to find someone to honor and learn their story.

#VigilForValor virtual campaign is open to anyone, even if they don’t attend a community craft event. All that’s required to honor a fallen service is to light a candle, whether made at a community event or from any source. Participants can then share a photo of the individual they are remembering, along with that person’s story and the candle they crafted, on social media, using the hashtag #VigilForValor and tagging @HHVets on Twitter and @healvets on Instagram.

Those who do don’t use social media are encouraged to email the photos of the individuals they are remembering and their stories to Heal Vets will then share these stories on its website and social media platforms.

About Help Heal Veterans
For 50 years, Help Heal Veterans has made a real difference in the lives of America's veterans by helping them heal from the visible and invisible wounds of war through therapeutic crafts. Founded during the Vietnam War, Heal Vets is that nation’s leader in using craft therapy and supplies craft therapy kits free-of-charge to active-duty military and veterans. The therapy kits often become a part of the patient's treatment plan for those recovering from traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, or other wounds of war. Heal Vets has distributed more than 31 million kits from hundreds of craft categories. Heal Vets is one of the top veterans' organizations in the U.S. and is respected for using contributions wisely and effectively.

Jennifer Baskerville
Help Heal Veterans
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