Two high school football rivals - Vassar and Unionville-Sebewaing - are coming together to honor U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Travis Mills.
Mills is making his way home to Vassar to be part of this week's homecoming festivities and students at Unionville-Sebewaing Area Schools are selling T-shirts to raise money for the wounded soldier.
Last April, Mills was in Afghanistan when he lost all of his limbs after being injured by an improvised explosive device.
Unionville-Sebewaing staff member Lindsay Maharg-Bitzer is proud to have her school play a part in helping the area soldier from Vassar.
"On a Friday night, typically, we just want to go after each other. But really, you know we're uniting and trying to just celebrate this man who's done a great thing," Maharg-Bitzer said. "We just really appreciate him and everything that he's done to serve our country and we're just proud that he represents us in that way."
Elexis Pitcher is a senior at Unionville-Sebewaing. She designed the shirts for the benefit and she's inspired to see how Mills is dealing with the injuries he suffered in Afghanistan.
"It's really cool to see someone like that - like such a hero to all of us students. He is so strong still and has such a good attitude about it all," Pitcher said.
The shirts have been on sale since Tuesday. And so far, the school has sold 300 of them resulting in $1500 for Travis Mills.
By the end of the week, the school is hoping shirt sales will raise about $5,000 for this local hero.
And during lunch, Unionville-Sebewaing Superintendent George Rierson sold ice cream sundaes to raise more money for the cause. The frozen treats brought in another $400.
"We're really wrapping a lot of the activities this week around the effort and activities in Vassar. Also we just really appreciate Vassar letting us know in advance and including us in the opportunity to celebrate Mills' homecoming," Rierson said.
Shirts will be sold at Friday's game at 7 p.m. in Vassar for $10, with $5 from each shirt sold going directly to Travis Mills.
Be sure to stay with WNEM TV5 and WNEM.com for complete coverage of Travis Mills' visit to his hometown of Vassar.
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