Mary Walters, of Craig, stands in front of the American flag at VFW Post 4265 in Craig. Walters, who serves as part of the Ladies Auxiliary in Craig, was honored with the VFW 2012-13 Salute to Service Award for her volunteer work with the organization.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Mary Walters, of Craig, stands in front of the American flag at VFW Post 4265 in Craig. Walters, who serves as part of the Ladies Auxiliary in Craig, was honored with the VFW 2012-13 Salute to Service Award for her volunteer work with the organization.

M2: Walters dedicated to area veterans

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— There are countless groups of people who benefit from the volunteer work done for them.

In Craig resident Mary Walters, local veterans have an outstanding contributor to their cause.

Walters, a member of the Ladies Auxiliary to Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4562 in Craig, has dedicated much of her life to helping veterans and enlisted soldiers alike.

As a member of the Ladies Auxiliary, she puts in work for all VFW events and ceremonies, but she is especially instrumental in the Fourth of July planning. She also regularly visits the Veterans Affairs facilities in Rifle and Grand Junction, as well as the Doak Walker Care Center in Steamboat.

For six years, she put her skill with a needle to work for soldiers overseas. Walters was a contributor to the Sew Much Comfort program from 2003 to 2008, making specialty clothing for wounded service members from all branches of the military.

Her dedication to veterans comes from a simple place: her husband, David, is one, and also a member of the VFW post in Craig.

“My husband and I are both lifetime members of VFW,” she said. Volunteering is "something else to add to my life. If I didn’t have it, I’d be lost.”

For her effort, Walters was given the VFW Salute to Service Award for Craig for 2012-13. The Salute to Service is awarded to the top volunteer at each post.

It was her second time receiving the honor.

“It means a lot to me to get it for the second time,” she said. “I like doing these things and putting time into them.”

Walters is an invaluable member of the VFW operation, her fellow Auxiliary members said.

“She’s always got something going on,” Maragaret Thompson said. “It’s just one thing after another.”

Walters’ biggest project of the year, the VFW’s Fourth of July celebration, is in its early planning stages. Despite being more than two months away, she knows from years of experience what it takes to put together a good event.

“I’m big on planning,” Walters said. “I know this stuff will sneak up on us if we don’t get going now. That’s how I try to do all my responsibilities for VFW, and hope that way they go really well.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com

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