Abe winners show the value of volunteers

The two individuals who received an Abe Award from the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce last Thursday truly represent what that award is all about.
Carl Rhodes and Linda Hanabarger are both well-known in the community and it is because of their volunteer work.
Since he and his wife, Pat, moved to Vandalia about eight years ago, Rhodes has helped lead programs to help veterans, including the establishment of a Veterans' Outreach Center, which focuses primarily on helping those dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder issues.
He also has taken on the local Veterans Day program, to ensure that there continues to be a way to honor those men and women who have served our country.
Further, he has gotten involved in the free community Thanksgiving dinner, and has made it possible for his church, Northside Christian Church, to host a free Christmas dinner, with the meals providing food and fellowship for others who otherwise would be alone during the holidays.
Hanabarger is well-known for her genealogy and historical research, sharing what she has learned – among other ways – through her weekly column on this page.
It is through her volunteer efforts that Hanabarger has dug into our rich history and kept it alive.
And, in recent years, she has taken on an additional role, that of Statehouse volunteer. It is with her help that Site Superintendent Steve Riddle can keep the Statehouse open as much as possible under funding restrictions.
Vandalia has a reputation for being a friendly community whose people reach out to others when and where help is needed.
Rhodes and Hanabarger are two of the reasons that that reputation continues to exist.
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