a fund the need project
The Forgotten Veterans Project was born out of Doc's legacy of servitude to his fellow soldiers, and the idea that you never leave a man behind. It is with this mentality that he began his mission 10 years ago.
Join us as we raise funds for this very worthy cause, that lays our veterans to much-deserved rest with dignity and compassion.
Here's a little more about the project and how it all got started:
Our Veterans - your Veterans - served this great nation to preserve our freedoms and the American way of life. Each patriotic American needs to care about our forgotten Veterans, lest we forget their deeds of glory and sacrifice. We must care about the homeless and the low-income Veterans. We must care about the Veterans who served in the National Guard, Reserves, or any of our country’s armed forces that do not qualify for VA benefits. Why? To my way of thinking, all Veterans deserve a dignified funeral and honorable burial; they earned it! Unfortunately, this is not always the case. For many reasons; few know how to help, what to do, and where to do it when planning their last days. And with nowhere to turn for answers, most of the time the veteran is buried without honors earned and without the dignified funeral he or she deserves. Often, before The Forgotten Veterans Project, the forgotten Veteran was cremated and unceremoniously discarded as if waste.
When the time comes to meet their creator, we can stand together and help the forgotten Veterans and/or their family in financial distress and hardship by aiding the Forgotten Veterans Program. Caring without action is a sign of insincerity. So I ask you, do you care enough about our forgotten Veterans to help honor them in death? Your donation, regardless of the amount, goes to support our efforts so that no Veteran goes to his or her maker without a dignified funeral and honorable burial.
Fast-forward 8 years, we met Doc during one of our hunting retreats and were immediately touched by his giving spirit, and knew that we had to get involved. As you know, our mission is to help Veterans transition into civilian life, and believe wholeheartedly, that our job doesn't end there. Without people like Doc, and the support of our patrons, many homeless or low income veterans in our area would not receive a proper burial.
We are thrilled to be able to share this good news with you all and are excited to dedicate a portion of the live auction at our 6th Annual KAMO Adventures Fundraiser to supporting Doc and The Forgotten Veteran Project. Thank you for the support over the years!
The KAMO Crew
About Doc Ballard
Learn More About the Man Behind Forgotten Veterans
Donald Everett Ballard was born on 5 December 1945, in Kansas City, Missouri. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on 27 December 1965 which started a long and decorated career with the United States Armed Forces. It was in Vietnam, where he would first prove himself to be a man of valor, a man of action.
On 16 May 1968, as he braved enemy fire to treat several Marines who were hit during an ambush, a grenade fell close to his group of men. Without hesitation, Doc yelled a warning, threw himself over the grenade, and waited for the blast, and along with it, certain death. When the grenade failed to detonate, he calmly got back up, wiped the sweat off of his brow, and continued administering medical aid as if nothing had occurred. Doc continued the battle, finished out his tour in Vietnam, and in 1970, he was awarded the Medal of Honor from President Nixon. Solidifying what the men in his company already knew, Doc Ballard was a hero.
After Vietnam, and receiving the Medal of Honor, Doc went on to have a celebrated military career. Rising to the rank of Colonel, Ballard retired in 2000, some 32 years after his life likely would have ended on the battlefield in Vietnam.
After retiring, Doc purchased a funeral home and cemetery in Grain Valley, MO. It was there that the mission of Forgotten Veterans came to light to serve the veterans across Jackson County, MO. Doc and his wife, Ginger, started Forgotten Veterans as a way to fill the gap for low-income and homeless veterans and their families to fund or partially fund a proper funeral.
We salute Doc Ballard and his commitment of service in honoring both military and civilian lives, on and off the battlefield.