Non-profit launches 'Perception' to help fallen soldiers grieving kids

Non-profit launches 'Perception' to help fallen soldiers grieving kids

LEELANAU COUNTY, Mich., (WPBN/WGTU) -- Whether you are laying a wreath or raising a flag, there are many special ways to honor a fallen soldier, but what about honoring the children they leave behind?

A new non-profit in northern Michigan is officially setting sail to do just that.

Michigan Challenge Traditional Sailing will provide a Great Lakes exploration experience for five days on the Beaver Island Archipelago throughout the summer.

Kids will learn to sail, explore the islands, kayak, and most importantly, grieve the loss of their military family member.

The non-profit has been in the works for a year and a half, but on Monday the non-profit’s ship ‘Perception’ was officially launched into Grand Traverse West Bay.

“Everybody wants to remember the fallen and remember the veterans and remember all the good times, but the kids are still here,” said Greg Nachazel, Michigan Challenge Traditional Sailing veterans affairs coordinator and board member. “How can we remember the kids that are still here? We can do something for them. We can perform an act of mercy. Maybe change their world. But for sure, let them know that we remember them. We are remembering the children of the fallen.”

At 65 feet long and 23 tons, Perception is one of the last two Herreshoff designed schooners left in the world.

Perception will be based in Northport.

The non-profit is still looking for more volunteers, crew member volunteers both locals and veterans.

If you are interested in volunteer or want to learn more about the program, click here.

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