Veterans, active duty service members play ball for good cause

Local

BOONVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)- After rains drenched the Tri-State Friday night, Bobby Oeth knew what he and a group of veterans, active duty service members, and members of the community needed to do.

So this morning, armed with rakes and Diamond Dry, they came to a softball field near the American Legion hall in Boonville to get the field ready for a day of softball, barbecue, and giving back to Operation Comfort Warrior.

Oeth, an active service member serving on the USS Dwight Eisenhower, came back to Boonville to organize the tournament. Oeth says it’s nice to come back and play for a cause like Operation Comfort Warrior. Oeth notes that he knows what fellow service members are dealing with, adding there’s “no better way” to come out, have fun, and raise some money.

Veteran Jim Koutz helped start the initiative during his tenure as American Legion National Commander in 2012, with a mission to supply wounded, ill, and injured service members or veterans with comfort items the government wouldn’t otherwise pay for.

As a Vietnam veteran, Koutz says people like him were “treated pretty rough” upon their return from duty, which inspired him and other veterans to help the next generation and welcome them back with open arms.

While the rains made for an early morning, Koutz and Oeth say they’re happy the weather finally cooperated long enough to have the event Saturday.

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