Y’all know that even though I’m an Army vet, and my son is an Army Reserve Soldier, I have a soft spot for Marines. My daughter Sarah is a U.S. Marine, and she kicks all sorts of ass!
So when a buddy of mine sent me a call for help for veteran Marine Staff Sergeant Amy Dillon, whose South Carolina home was severely damaged by flooding from Hurricane Matthew, I figured the very least I could do is help boost signal!
Marines represent a special type of dedication to our country. I hear about some of the training in which Sarah is involved, and I’m continuously amazed at her grace, dedication, and strength – both mental and physical. It is not an easy path she has chosen, and I’m endlessly proud of her.
Amy Dillon is a Marine. She trained young Marines at Parris Island, and continues her dedication to this nation and the rights we hold dear to this day.
But this time, it’s Amy Dillon who needs some help.
First, some background on Staff Sergeant Dillon.
Dillon, a 12 year veteran of the Marine Corps and former Drill Instructor at MCRD Parris Island is but the latest in her family’s long history of service in the US military. Her grandfather joined the Navy in the Philippines and was lost in 1942 during the battle of the Java Sea. Her father followed in his footsteps, also serving in the Navy, earning US citizenship and emigrating here. This makes Dillon the 3rd generation of her family to serve in the military but the 1st to be born in the U.S. She works full time as a firearms instructor for Palmetto State Armory and devotes much of her free time to organizations that advocate for gun rights and veteran’s causes. A partial list of the organizations she volunteers with include the DC Project, SC Carry, GA Carry, US Concealed Carry Association, Veteran’s Advocacy Services, and Samaritan’s Purse.
So not only is she a vet who served her country, but she’s also an ardent gun rights advocate – surely a person worthy of your help, right?
The hurricane did severe damage to everything Dillon owned.
Hurricane Matthew devastated Dillon’s South Carolina neighborhood, and she — like many of her neighbors — did not carry flood insurance as they were not located in a flood zone. Several days of standing water destroyed nearly everything in her home. Clothing, furniture, cabinets, appliances, even treasured personal items like her service uniforms were a complete loss. The floors had to be stripped to bare concrete and even the walls have had to have the drywall stripped from the floor up four feet to allow for drying and mold remediation. To top things off, thanks to health concerns the home has been declared unsuitable for occupancy until drying and mold remediation are complete.
I cannot imagine the absolute destruction this kind of tragedy wreaks with one’s life! She can’t live in her house. Everything she owned is gone. She’s essentially starting from scratch.
Y’all know, I don’t post requests for donations here very often. I donate to many different causes, including animal rescues, and last year – after the fiasco with my house – I donated $1500 to Fisher House.
But this is different. This is a fellow vet in need, who has lost everything due to unforeseen devastation. Tragedies like this do happen sometimes, and I feel like we, veterans and members of the gun rights community, should do something to help.
Dillon has set up a GoFundMe site to help rebuild her home and her life.
There are a lot of campaigns out there that beg for money for a lot of stupid crap, but there are some causes that should prompt us to perk up, listen, and help if we can in any way. Amy Dillon gave 12 years of her life in service to our country, and now she has dedicated her life to protecting and defending our rights, as well as teaching people how to exercise those rights safely and responsibly. I think as shooters, veterans and supporters, we need to band together and help.
My buddy Brian has done something I consider brilliant! Being a libertarian-type of guy, he knows that there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, so he is putting his money where his mouth is and helping Amy’s cause. With the help of two Utah businesses and competitive shooters from across the country, Brian has organized a raffle to help Dillon raise money to rebuild.
The prize is a custom AR-15 rifle built entirely from parts donated by shooters across the nation, including scope, case and other accessories with an approximate retail value of $2,000. South Jordan, Utah, company Vigilante Arms is performing a custom Cerakote paint job done in Dillon’s favorite colors, crimson and grey while Springville-based Rangemasters of Utah is hosting the drawing and will handle the legalities of transferring the rifle to the prize winner, including background checks and shipping to an authorized dealer in the state of the winner’s residence.
You know anytime there’s a firearm transfer involved there have to be rules. We can talk all day about the rights and wrongs of having said rules, but facts are facts, and this fundraiser is legitimate in every way.
In order to assist Staff Sgt Dillon and enter the raffle, donations should be made to her GoFundMe campaign:
Every $25 donated will be one raffle entry. In order to enter the raffle entrants must forward their receipt from GoFundMe to the following email address:
A confirmation email will be sent.
A Facebook page has been setup as the primary source of information for everything related to the fundraising effort.
It should be noted that the prize rifle will not be compliant with any state-level restrictions on so-called “assault weapons” or magazine capacity restrictions. Entrants should check their local laws before entry as entries from states where the prize rifle is prohibited will not be valid. Ownership of the prize rifle will be transferred by a federally-authorized firearms dealer in accordance with all applicable laws including background check requirements.
If you want to help someone who has dedicated her life to protecting and defending the Constitution of the United States – both in military service and in her civilian life – please help.
If you want a chance to win an awesome rifle – please help.
If you want to do something nice for someone during the holiday season, just because you’re a nice person, please help.
We, Americans, are some of the most generous, kindhearted people in the world! We stood together and raised millions of dollars for the victims of the earthquake in Haiti. We donated millions to help Japan after its 2014 quake. We are endlessly generous toward our own, having given more than $350 billion to charity in 2014.
I would urge all of us to help spread the word and help one of our own right now.