Quilts of Valor honors eight veterans at Finney County Fair to give them 'the recognition they deserve'
Eight veterans were given quilts and honored for their military service during a Quilts of Valor presentation at the Finney County Fair Saturday.
Kay Hoskinson, volunteer with the Quilts of Valor of Garden City, said the organization began in 2003 by Catherine Roberts, who has a son serving in Afghanistan.
"She envisioned him sitting on his cot weighed down by the experiences that he has had and envisioned him wrapped in a quilt," she said. "She considered that he might find some healing comfort from that, and that was the beginning of the Quilts of Valor."
Since the Quilts of Valor Foundation began, nationwide there are now about 10,000 men and women involved in making quilts, Hoskinson reported. In Garden City there are about 25 actively involved and they have given out almost 300 quilts since their first presentation on Flag Day in June of 2016. Nationwide about 275,000 have been given out.
Hoskinon said each volunteer participates for their own reason, but in general they do it because they want veterans to know that people appreciate their service.
"A lot of times when people come back, they immediately resume civilian life without missing a beat, and sometimes they don't get the recognition that they deserve," she said. " This is just a small token of our appreciation, to make sure that you know that we do know that you did sacrifice something, no matter how big or how little that you think it was, because we know that being away from home, leaving everything that you know and going into the unknown like that is something that we cannot understand unless we had experienced it ourselves."
Hoskinson said she and her sisters got involved because their brother was a Vietnam veteran and their uncle was a POW in WWII.
"Every time we give a quilt to these gentlemen, some of which we know and some of them we don't, is in memory of our own family, but it's also in appreciation to what they did to sacrifice."
The group presented quilts to 21 veterans through summer ceremonies in Finney, Kearny and Gray Counties.
The eight who received quilts Saturday are: Dennis Peitz, Darrell Binnis, Gary Acker, Bill Hogan, Jarrod Rosenstock, Allyson Rosenstock, Daryl Hopkins and Rebecca Matthews Harris.
Husband and wife Jarrod Rosenstock and Allyson Rosenstock, were both appreciative for the quilts and recognition of their service.
Jarrod Rosenstock said it's always nice to be recognized, and while he doesn't like being the center of attention, he was glad to have had the opportunity Saturday to be recognized.
"A special thank you to all the people involved in this, it was very kind of them to do that," he said.
Allyson Rosenstock was excited for the event, as it was her first veterans event since returning from Afghanistan.
"When I came home from Afghanistan, they made us stay late when we were in Ft. Hood, so I missed being able to be in the Veterans Day Parade with my dad when I came back then, so I haven't been able to do a cool thing, so this is my first cool thing since being back, even though we've been back for a while," she said.
The Rosenstocks met in the Army during Jarrod's second deployment and Allyson's first. They have been married for five years and began dating in 2013. They have one daughter, Coraline, born in 2016.
Jarrod Rosenstock said he joined because "it's obviously a good opportunity to serve your country, the people, things like that. It was nice to have the opportunity to do that and it's a good way to kind of branch out and find your way. Military is good for anybody trying to find your way."
Allyson Rosenstock agrees. She joined because grew up with her father and other relatives in the Army and because didn't know what she wanted to do after high school.
Allyson Rosenstock said she didn't want to give up being involved with the Army after she moved away from home, so she "signed up too" and was lucky enough to meet Jarrod while deployed.
"It definitely made deployment easier," Jarrod Rosenstock said.