Veterans celebrate camaraderie, concert during Lt. Dan Band weekend

Veterans celebrate camaraderie, concert during Lt. Dan Band weekend

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Retired Army servicewoman Shanda Taylor-Boyd, described it as a "veterans glow."

Taylor-Boyd beamed with excitement Saturday, among hundreds of military veterans who traveled to the Lowcountry for the 5th annual Lt. Dan Band Weekend.

The weeklong celebration concluded with a Saturday-night concert at The North Charleston Coliseum. Before the band played its first note, veterans like Dave Riley, a national officer with Disabled American Veterans (DAV), were celebrating a sense of camaraderie.

"I'm involved with being around vets a lot, but it's not that often that I get to spend quality time with people that have been through the same stuff that I've been through."

Riley served as a Coast Guard rescue swimmer for 17 years. He later lost all of his limbs after a bacterial infection developed into gangrene.

"It gives me a good feeling inside to be with people of like mind, body."

Proceeds from the Lt. Dan Band concert will benefit 100% volunteer non-profit group, The Independence Fund. The group is made entirely of combat veterans, who've distributed up to $11 million in goods and services to some of the nation's most severely injured veterans.

"We're not a hospital, and we can't do emergency trauma, but we certainly can raise money and buy some wheelchairs for guys," said founder Steve Danyluk.

In the last 18 months, The Independence Fund purchased and donated up to 750 wheelchairs, valued at an average of $15,000 each.

"That's how we roll," he said.

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