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Showing their support

By Staff | Feb 20, 2015

Submitted The Bethany Teen Group pose for a photo with members of the 814th ASMC in Bismarck.

The eight members of the Bethany Teen Group have one focus: paying it forward.

The group made of co-leaders William and Nancy Griffin, their kids, Sam and Ashley, Cole and DJ Schneibel, Devon Michaels, Dawson Schepp, Callie and Morgan Oppen traveled to Bismarck on Feb. 8 to receive the Distinguished Center of Influence Award from the North Dakota National Guard as part of their paying it forward. The group adopted a soldier, one SSG (staff sergeant) Katrina Mickelson, and sent letters, money and care packages to the 814th Area Support Medical Company based out of Bismarck with a detachment in Grand Forks which was deployed to Afghanistan in support of the War on Terror. The group also communicated with Mickelson via Skype, an internet video communication and messaging service.

When the 814th came home, Mickelson called the group and said they were being considered for the award.

“(The award) showed this group that some gestures so small could mean the world to people far from home,” Nancy Griffin said.

While in Bismarck, the group got the opportunity to meet and take photos with members of the 814th, North Dakota’s Congressional delegation, and Governor Jack Dalrymple’s Chief of Staff, Ron Rauschenberger.

In the past, the group did several pay-it-forward projects, including assembling backpacks for veterans.

“Will and I, we are so proud of these kids. It’s such a small group and they’ve accomplished so much,” Nancy Griffin said.

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