By Natalie Zarowny
Dickey Bullers, a Fulton, Illinois veteran, had an idea a few months ago.
To put a benefit together for the Wounded Warriors Project, an organization that helps honor and empower wounded vets all over the country.
"He called me one day and he said, ‘Barb, it was in August, we've got to do something!' And I said, ‘About what Dickey?' And he said, ‘About the wounded warriors,'" said Barb Suehl Janis, who organized the event.
Tragically, a few weeks later, Dickey died in a bicycle accident.
But his good friend Barb was determined to continue with the benefit, despite her pain.
"And I was gonna be a quitter, I wasn't gonna do it. And I decided, no, I needed to do the opposite. I don't need to do it for Dickey, but I'm doing it because of Dickey," said Barb.
Tonight, Dickey's dream became a reality.
Veterans from all over the Quad Cities area, spanning from World War II to the Iraq war, showed up to a benefit at the Fulton fire station to show their support.
"I feel deeply for the guys that lost arms and legs and other wounds, and if we can help in any way make their lives a little more easy," said Robert Fitz, a Korean war Veteran.
Local high school cheerleaders were there to cheer veterans on as they told the crowd when and where they'd served.
A local band played some golden oldies as the donations came piling in.
Dickey Bullers' family couldn't be happier about the turnout.
"His vision was to make a little bit of money, and I think he would be very proud of us today," said Shawn Bullers, Dickey's son.
The grand total of money raised for the Wounded Warriors Project was more than $16,000, a thousand dollars more than their goal.