Changing lives for injured veterans


Sgt. Major Jesse Acosta, center, is on the board of directors of the Independence Fund. He was keynote speaker during the recent Forgotten Coast Wounded Warrior Weekend.

Special to The Star
Published: Thursday, July 31, 2014 at 09:51 AM.

The Independence Fund began with a chair.

A new advisory board now includes a sister.

Port St. Joe resident Brenda Garth, president of the Semper Fi Sisters, was recently named to the advisory board of the Miami-based The Independence Fund, a volunteer organization that strives to provide tools and therapies to assist injured veterans.

In addition, Semper Fi Sisters, which began seven years in Port St. Joe and has blossomed into a nationwide network of hundreds of wives, mothers, sisters, aunt and grandmothers of members of the military, was named one of two officials non-profit partners of The Independence Fund.

The advisory board was created to help guide The Independence Fund’s strategic direction and will undertake an array of projects, especially helping to plan and coordinate the upcoming Lt. Dan Weekend in Charleston, SC.

In addition to Garth, Blair Hughes of Hartford, CT (a wounded veteran’s wife), Jane Horton of Washington, D.C. (Horton’s husband was killed in combat), Sarah Verardo of Charlotte, NC (her husband was severely injured in battle) and Capt. John Woodall of North Carolina (a wounded veteran) were named board members.

“We are extremely honored to have these leaders on board with us,” said Steve “Luker” Danyluk, the president and founder of the Independence Fund. “They represent a broad spectrum of advocates and expertise in the military and wounded veteran community.

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