New Organization in Antrim Co. Brings Veterans and Non-Veterans Together

A new organization in Antrim County is bringing together veterans and non-veterans.

The Friends of Veterans of Antrim County was started to promote patriotism and help the community.

Friends of Veterans of Antrim County was only just a dream a year ago. Now, it’s a place where veterans and non-veterans feel like they belong together.

“I could see a need that was happening every time a project came up we needed some veterans to help and there wasn’t enough veterans that were capable,” said Raymond Mills, organization president. “Not that they didn’t want to, they wanted to, but they weren’t capable to be able to help out on some of these projects.”

Mills is an army veteran who served in the Korean War. He created Friends of Veterans of Antrim County so anyone at any age could join.

“We’re trying to fill a generational gap, some of the younger veterans want an opportunity to volunteer and help out their community,” said Walter Bedell, veteran service officer for Antrim County.

The organization also wants to make a statement on special holidays to commemorate those who have served.

“Already we’re going to have flags along M 88 and each one is going to sponsor a flag with the dog tags hanging from it,” said Mills.

Sponsoring a flag costs $100 and they hope to have more than 30 flags by Veterans Day. The organization is just beginning but there are big plans ahead.

“Migrate out from Bellaire, so we’d like to see some of our surrounding community’s kind of jump on board and take this responsibility of patriotism and community and pass it forward,” said Bedell.

The group meets once a month and more members are welcome. You can contact Raymond Mills at (231) 350-8266.

They are also in the process of becoming a nonprofit organization.