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LHU College Republicans club and Centre County Association of Young Republicans honor local veterans

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LHU College Republicans club members with veterans Lawrence Truax and “Big Jim” Hibbert during a recent fundraising event.

On Oct. 26, Clinton and Centre County veterans were honored by the Lock Haven University College Republicans club and the Centre County Association of Young Republicans (CCAYR) during a fundraising event at Haywood’s on the Green, Mill Hall.

The two organizations sold tickets and gathered auction items for the event, which raised more than $4,500 for the Veterans’ Multi-Service Center (VMC) in Centre County and the Heroes and Horses in Clinton County.

Harry Schenk hosted the auction and the LHU club utilized funds from two years of fundraising to host the dinner segment of the program.

A tribute to all veterans, the event also focused on honoring two individual veterans, one from each county. Adrianna Bumbarger, LHU College Republicans member, opened the event with a welcome and introduced Congressman Fred Keller.

The first to be honored was 90-year-old Korean War veteran marine, Lawrence Truax. He was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation, a Combat Ribbon, United Nations Medal, a Korean Service medal and three Bronze stars. During the event, Keller presented Truax with a flag that had been flown over the nation’s Capital.

Veteran marine “Big Jim” Hibbert, served and medically retired after service with the United States Marine Corps and the United States Army just a few days shy of 19 years. Congressman G.T. Thompson’s office coordinated the flying of a flag over the Capitol in honor of Hibbert. Brian Parfitt, chairman of the CCAYR and a veteran, introduced Marcie Assetta, campaign director, who presented Hibbert with the flag.

During his service, Hibbert completed three combat deployments, and six overseas deployments throughout Iraq, Japan, Egypt, Thailand, Brazil and South Africa and also served in various commands throughout the U.S., including MCAGCC, 29 Palms and California. He is the recipient of a CAR, USMC and a CIB, U.S. Army.

Hibbert holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from LHU. He continues to serve at the Spring Creek Chapter of Trout Unlimited’s Veterans Service Program that provides outdoor recreation, transition and other services to the 10,000 eligible veterans in Centre and surrounding counties.

Following the presentation of the flags, Keller presented checks to Vickie Hancock, program director for Heroes and Horses, and Dustin Kinley, of VMC.

“What a memorable, amazing evening of our communities coming together to support all veterans. … I was proud to be a part of it,” Hancock said.

“We are encouraged by this group of young Americans and their commitment to service,” said Dr. Jessica Bowman Hosley, LHU College Republicans advisor. “Giving to our veterans is a wonderful way to serve our community.”

Auction items were donated by: Marcie Assetta , Addies, Lance and Selena Babb, Bechdel Family, Adrianna Bumbarger, CO2- Lock Haven,Curt’s Smokin’ Ribs- Curt Candor, Robert Drum, Flowers by Monica, Kristine & David Eng, Hibbett Sports, Hosley Family, Colleen Hurst & Family, Keystone Church –State College, Lens & Pens Design, Phil Mapstone (PH3-USN, Vet), Southern Creations-Bill Leavell, Kenneth & Susan Lieberman, Paul Moats, Nittany Woodcrafts-Amos Fisher, Jr., Penn State Athletic Department, James Franklin-PSU Coach, Patrick Chambers- PSU Coach, Tamia Roach, Sage Resources-Mark and Mary Ellen Stern , Sand Piper Designs- Carol Terry, Fresh Start Chiropractic-Dr. Fawn Shaffer, Tim and Mary Stiffler, Tractor Supply, Twin Run Farm Bakery, Adam and Patti Yocum and Nate and Laura Yocum.

For more information on Lock Haven University, visit www.lockhaven.edu, email admissions@lockhaven.edu, or call 570-484-2011. 

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Lock Haven University’s main campus is located on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River in the scenic mountains of Pennsylvania. The university offers 49 undergraduate majors and certifications with 47 minors and five graduate programs.

LHU is a member of Pennsylvania’s State System, the largest provider of higher education in the Commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 2,300 degree and certificate programs in more than 530 academic areas of study. Nearly 520,000 system alumni live and work in Pennsylvania.

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