A benefit in Kansas City to take place March 24th, 2017, was not cancelled even though one of the organizers, Veteran Ben Kelley, tragically took his life March 1, 2017.
Kelley was an outspoken advocate for Veterans with mental health issues and worked with a group called Foundation for Exceptional Warriors as well as AmVets. Kelley would take one of his boots that he wore while serving in the Navy and pass it around like a collection plate for donations.
Chris Wolfenberger served on the Board of FEW with Kelley. "Ben was the guy when a wife or a husband called me and said hey my warrior is suicidal Ben was the person I would call and say hey I need you to call this person in 10 minutes, he was my go to person who talked these people off the ledge," Wolfenbarger said.
Wolfenberger had spoken with Kelley the day he took his life and had no idea there was anything wrong.
Kelley's ashes were in attendance at the event.