CHARLESTON -- Local Veterans of Foreign Wars posts will be assisting in a fundraiser Wednesday that will help honor guards with uniform costs give service men and women proper military funeral services.

VFW Post 1592 in Charleston and VFW Post 4325 in Mattoon will be collecting donations for Operation Honor Guard, a non-profit organization that assists honor guards financially, specifically helping update guard member uniforms.

According to the Operation Honor Guard website, a uniform can cost upwards of $800.

“Unfortunately, many Honor Guards lack the funds and resources necessary to properly say farewell to these men and women,” the website reads.

Post 1592 members will be stationed in the Diepholz Auto Group lot located at 631 W. Lincoln Ave. in Charleston to collect monetary donations. Post 4325 members will be based at Consolidated Communications at 121 S. 17th St. in Mattoon.

The website states that the fundraiser will run from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. Butch Jenkins, Post 1592 commander, said members will be at Diepholz from noon to 7 p.m.

Jenkins stressed the importance of the honor guard and their work at military funerals.

“It is an honor for the veteran, but it also shows respect for the family,” Jenkins said.

He noted that many families, years after someone in the military died, ask for a proper military funeral by the honor guard.

Jenkins said the money from the fundraiser is distributed to honor guard units across the state through grants for updated suits for honor guard members.

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Jarad Jarmon is a reporter for the JG-TC. He covers the city of Charleston, Eastern Illinois University, Mattoon schools and the Regional Office of Education.

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