Monday, July 07, 2008

Man crafts walking sticks for wounded soldiers

Man crafts walking sticks for wounded soldiers

By Ann Bailey - Grand Forks Herald
Posted : Monday Jul 7, 2008 6:07:26 EDT

PORTLAND, N.D — On Independence Day, and every other day, soldiers at Walter Reed hospital in Washington know they can lean on Dennis Enger.

The Portland man has dedicated himself to making willow walking sticks for the soldiers who have had a leg amputated. Enger began carving the sticks from willow tree saplings two years ago.

“I had a friend whose grandson lost a leg over in Iraq, so I thought I had to do something,” he said.

A Vietnam-era Army veteran, Enger has a strong kinship with young men who are serving their country. He contacted a fellow member of the North Dakota Vietnam Veterans of America organization to find out how he could distribute the sticks to veterans at Walter Reed. The organization delivered about 50 of Enger’s walking sticks to the hospital in February 2006.



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