Car wash planned to benefit family coping with veteran's PTSD

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WALLA WALLA — A car wash to benefit the Mark Hexum family is planned for Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., on “A” Street at the Walla Walla Regional Airport, coinciding with an “Honour Project” event at the same location.

The Honour Project, created by Kathleen and Mark Small of Walla Walla, offers free plane rides to veterans in a restored 1942 Boeing Stearman, which was originally used as a U.S. military pilot trainer. The Smalls plan to run flights on the weekends through mid-October and at no charge to veterans.

Mark Hexum was deployed to Iraq for the U.S. Army when the vehicle he was in was destroyed by a land mine. The soldier lost his best friend in the explosion and now lives with post-traumatic stress disorder.

The family recently incurred unexpected moving costs and helping them run a car wash seemed like a good fit, said Don Schack, chaplain for the Walla Walla chapter of AMVETS. “It’s helping bring awareness to veterans.”

There will be signs directing folks to the car wash, noted Megan Hexum. She has also made fliers to distribute to help increase understanding and the signs of PTSD and will be passing those out to customers.

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