In Springdale, the Honoring of Heroes Gala recognized veterans in need by giving back to service members in our area.
There were some big names at Saturday nights event including the president of the National Rifle Association, Governor Asa Hutchinson, and celebrity guests from the hit TV show Duck Dynasty.
They all came together to show veteran appreciation through local charitable organizations.
“It’s been quite the experience,” said Cpl. Aaron Mankin.
Mankin said he has a different perspective than most people.
“That whole ordeal of surviving an IED, surviving a blast has given me a lot of my story to share with others,” Mankin said.
Mankin was injured during combat and said this event is a way to help those just like him move forward.
Organizer Joe Donaldson said its important to say thank you in a way which goes beyond Veterans Day.
“Sometimes we forget a year or two down the road after combat, the situations and the PTSD that soldiers are dealing with really impacts them, their families, their marriages and their life from that point on,” Donaldson said.
One-hundred percent of the ticket proceeds go toward local charities like Sheep Dog Impact Assistance, a group which has helped vets like Mankin.
“They have impacted my life and have opportunities to be a part of their programs with what they do. Allowing guys and gals to get off the couch to be busy and enjoy life again,” Mankin said.
At the event, local groups gave back to the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country through financial help and life experiences.
“I hope it means a lot, and that is one reason why we have decided to put it together, ” Donaldson said,
“With an event like this, it is just amazing to be a part of, and things like this they do help they do make an impact,” Mankin said.