Seventy-five competitors and volunteers showed up for the Marine Corps League’s Steel Challenge held July 8 at Armed Texans shooting range east of Mineola.
There were 11 divisions with first, second and third place winners. There was also a side match that brought additional money for the league.
Commandant Kelly Smith said the event raised about $3,000 and the group plans to make this an annual event. “The support and response from the community was amazing,” he said. “But we’ll need more local businesses and individuals to get involved in the future as we continue to grow, and we hope to add at least one more national sponsor next year.”
The Marine Corps League provided free hot dogs and Bush’s Chicken provided wraps. provided lunch to all of the shooters. Participants came from all over Texas, and as far away as Richardson. Some children also took part in the shooting competition. Prizes donated by vendors were given away. ETMC parked an ambulance in sight to assist with safety.
The Patriot Steel Challenge was a general fundraiser. However, the majority of the funds the league raises is used to support veterans and their families in the community in times of hardship.
“We try to fill in the gaps that veterans’ benefits and other programs aren’t able to cover,” Smith said.