MILL HALL - The Central Pa. Chapter of Serve Outdoors recently hosted an outdoor hunting event in honor and appreciation of service for disabled veteran Sgt. Alex Mahfood of Mill Hall.
Sgt. Mahfood is a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving in Iraq for three tours totaling two-and-a-half years. Mahfood suffers from neurological damage of the spinal column endured while on duty in Iraq.
These injuries, inflicted by mortar blast impacts and from a road-side bomb striking his convoy, caused sporadic nerve problems in Mahfood's arms, hands and legs.
Pictured above are those who participated in the Serve Outdoors event for Sgt. Alex Mahfood. Standing, from left to right, are hunt event volunteers George Bardo, Hailey Bardo, Justin Courter and Dave Bardo. Sgt. Mahfood is kneeling.
He also suffers from diminished lung function capacity from constantly breathing smoke from burning oil well fires and camp trash pit fires that burn anything imaginable.
"It was an honor and privilege to spend the day outdoors with Alex," chapter director Bill Bardo said.
"He is a very fine young man who sacrificed and endured so much for myself and others to enjoy and maintain the freedom we have in our country.
"It is the least we can do to show our deep appreciation."
Serve Outdoors is a new and local all-volunteer, non-profit organization serving the residents of Central Pa.
Their mission is to host and assist in organized and guided outdoor events for those who need a little help from others to enjoy recreation in the outdoors.
They host mainly hunting and fishing events for those in need of some sort of physical assistance to experience and enjoy the outdoors and who would be unable to do so on their own.
Their participants include veteran and non-veteran people with a disability who have no alternate form of assistance get out and enjoy the outdoors.
Serve Outdoors also works with youth and the elderly who may need some form of assistance, whether it be from illness, physical, financial, or simply no one to help them get outside. The organization's focus is on responsibility, safety, hope and good-will.
Serve Outdoors would like to thank the following businesses and organizations for generously supporting the recent hunting event for Sgt. Mahfood: American Legion Auxiliary Unit 131, Son's of Italy, Yost-Gedon Funeral Home; 40 ET 8 Chateau 903; and the VFW Post 9575.
A special thanks to Dave Bower, director of the Clinton County VA, for introducing Mahfood to Serve Outdoors. Also, thanks to Mahfood himself for generously donating right back to help another participant and for donating, through the organization, part of the hunt harvest to the local Salvation Army to help the needy.
Serve Outdoors is reaching out to the communities of Central Pa. for support in its mission. They are asking them to try and truly understand the life-changing adventure they can help provide for those less fortunate with no other means to experience the outdoors.
Individuals, families, businesses, churches, clubs or organizations who would like to help or who would like more information in sponsoring a specific individual for an outdoor event may do so by contacting Bardo at (570) 726-7321.
He can also be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Assistant director, George (Peanut) Bardo, can be contacted at (570) 660-2474.