Young Patriot Continues His Mission to Remember All Veterans

A 12-year-old, named a GoFundMe kid hero, declares we can honor our bravest 'every day, not just on a holiday'

Preston Sharp of Redding, California, is a young boy with a big heart for honoring military veterans.

He has become something of a national hero — and deservedly so. His mission is to help veterans in any way possible, including putting an American flag on every U.S. veteran’s grave.

So far, he has raised $62,028 toward his $65,000 goal — and that’s only the beginning.

“Preston has set a new goal to honor veterans in all 50 states and to challenge others to get involved wherever they are through the Flag and Flower Challenge (#FandFChallenge),” wrote his mother, April, on his GoFundMe page.

“This is a challenge for those across the United States, and other countries, where U.S. servicemen and women are buried, to place a U.S. flag and a flower and thank a veteran,” she continued. “Over the last three years, Preston has organized the placement of over 50,000 U.S. flags and artificial red carnations at veterans’ gravesites in 11 states, and he’s not stopping here.”

Preston has worked tirelessly to raise money for his cause, and his mother notes he has “carefully used each donation” to give back to veterans across the nation.

With such a zeal for honoring vets, it’s not surprising he’s being noticed yet again.

“Preston is being honored as this month’s GoFundMe Kid Hero,” wrote his mother on Preston’s GoFundMe page.

He has never sought the limelight for himself, yet his own star continues to rise.

To date, his good works and noble service have sparked the interest and admiration of those in high places, including President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump, who honored Preston and his mother at the State of the Union address this past January (see the president’s touching words about Preston Sharp in the video above).

The boy continues his mission today, noting on his website, “I want to honor veterans in every state. As of April, I have honored California, Nevada, Florida, Virginia, Oregon, Maryland, Idaho, Arizona, Alabama and Tennessee. I have placed flags and flowers on over 48,000 veterans’ gravesites.”

When LifeZette first shared Preston’s compelling story last September, he had gathered some $33,000 in donations. To date, he’s nearly doubled that amount, according to his GoFundMe page. Still, the young patriot has no plans to slow down anytime soon.

Related: Memorial Day Is Far More Than a Holiday

“Preston is so excited to be selected, but more importantly, he is excited to share his mission with even more people. He is working toward his goal of honoring veterans in all 50 states and he needs your help to do it. Please continue to share his campaign and spread the word,” wrote his proud mom.

She added, “With Memorial Day [here], it’s important to honor those who have fought for our country, but Preston wants us to remember that we can honor veterans every day, not just on a holiday.”

Elizabeth Economou is a former CNBC staff writer and adjunct professor. Follow her on Twitter.

(photo credit, homepage image: Preston Sharp…, merged with American flags, CC BY 2.0, by James N. Mattis)

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