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Lakeland football to hold fundraisers

Money raised for Never Forgotten Honor Flight

June 30, 2020 by Brett LaBore

Over the last few months, tough times have been upon everyone. There is some encouraging news to share and that has come from the Lakeland Union High School football program.

Every year, the Fourth of July parade in Minocqua has raised money for veterans to participate in the Never Forgotten Honor Flight  to Washington D.C. to see the memorials.

This year the parade was canceled. In response to that, Lakeland football player David Bock wanted to set up a fundraiser so the veterans could still go on the Never Forgotten Honor Flight.

“David Bock reaches out to me and said he would like to continue on behalf of the football program some sort of fundraiser for the honor flight because the parade got canceled,” LUHS football coach Dan Barutha said. 

Vietnam veteran and Vilas County Sheriff’s Office commissioner Wally Obermann had been at the forefront of the parade, leading the veterans. Now he’s helping the football players with this fundraiser.

“David, myself, Wally and other football players Barron Lenz and Jacob Hayes — in terms of setting the whole thing up it was a great opportunity for a player led fundraiser, really more so than what we could have done in the parade,” Barutha said.

Obermann has also started a Citizenship Award that goes to the Lakeland football player who displays a certain amount of off-the-field character, regardless of the talent on the field. 

Barutha is proud of his players for being willing to start and help with the fundraiser, something he is teaching in his program and what he wants his players to exude off the field.

“I’m very happy because what we’re trying to do is empower guys to be good people and be better men, and servant leadership is a common cultural component and we dedicate things to what we do in the program to show servant leadership,” Barutha said. “The guys have now taken leadership, taken the tools and they’ve taken those things and they’ve independently gone on to do some of these activities.”

Working with owner Steve Pletta, the first fundraiser will be held at Hoggie Doggies from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Friday, July 3.

Following that, there will be a fundraiser one week later on Saturday, July 11 at ACE Hardware in Woodruff. 

Brett LaBore may be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]

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