More than 3,500 soldiers were killed in the Battle of Gettysburg, a Union victory that many considered a turning point in the Civil War. About 1,000 of those soldiers buried at the Gettysburg National Cemetery in Pennsylvania were never identified. Their gravestones are marked with a number.
That devastated Indie Genest, 12, of Auburn so much, she decided to start a project that she hopes will make a difference. Using baling wire, she's been making flowers for the past three months. She plans on making another trip next summer to deliver them.
"My family and I took a trip across the country last summer. And we went to Gettysburg of course," said Indie. "There there was these stones and they were gravestones of unknown soldiers with a white block on it. And to me that was devastating."
Indie has a personal tie to war veterans. Her grandfather, who she never got to meet, died in the Vietnam War. She also visited the Vietnam Wall in Washington D.C. as part of her trip.
"We found his name. It was a very emotional moment. We all looked at it and started crying," said Indie. "It was really important to me to see that he was recognized."
Indie's goal is to make 1000 flowers for all the unknown graves. So far, she has made about 100, even getting some cuts and scrapes while working on her project.
"This is my first flower," said Indie, pointing out her first attempt. "Versus now these long flowers you can stick in her ground."
Indie also pointed out her dirty her hands get while working with the baling wire.
"This is a box of about 100 flowers," said Indie, showing what she has done so far. " We're gonna get about 10 of these. The shipping costs a lot of money, especially if we have 5 to 10 boxes."
If you'd like to be apart of Indie's project, you can email her mother Jami.
Indie also spends free time volunteering at the Auburn Veterans Memorial Hall for her local VFW. On Saturday Day, she'll be helping at the "Hoedown for Heroes," a dinner fundraiser, with food, live music, and a special raffle.
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