Group Raises Funds for Wounded Soldiers, New Scholarship

July 2, 2011 Updated Jul 2, 2011 at 10:36 PM EDT

By Allen Leight

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July 2, 2011 Updated Jul 2, 2011 at 10:36 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) - A group of Clarence residents came together for a truly patriotic cause this 4th of July weekend.

The group known as Clarence Citizens for Veterans are selling t-shirts, Chiavetta's Chicken and taking donations to support the Wounded Warriors Project and for a scholarship in honor of a hometown hero who died while serving overseas.

The Wounded Warriors Project is a national organization that helps soldiers recover and re-integrate into society after suffering traumatic injuries while serving.

The group is also working to set-up a scholarship fund in honor of Air Force Staff Sergeant Mark Spence, who died in a helicopter crash in Italy in 2007.

SSGT. Spence's father is grateful that this scholarship not only will help generations to come, but it also serves as a permanent reminder.

"People need to know that there are people giving their lives and sacrificing their futures for their freedoms. They need to know that. They need to remember these people who have sacrificed, the families that have sacrificed," said Mark T. Spence.