WKYT - Lexington - Headlines

Family of dead teen soldier turn heartache into help

The family of a teen soldier killed in Afghanistan found a way to let his legacy live on Saturday.

Less than a week after Private First Class Dustin Gross's death, his family organized a donation drive in their hometown of Mount Sterling.

At the American Legion's Montgomery Unit, various, much-needed items are being carefully packed into boxes, the boxes are meticulously stacked, and soon the whole pile will be sent to troops overseas.

"We are so proud of this community, that everybody's come together and done this. We couldn't ask for a better turn out for this. We're so proud to know that everybody loved him so much," says mother Angie Brown, talking about her son, 19-year-old Dustin Gross.

The private first class died earlier this week, while fighting in Afghanistan.

"There's not a doubt in my mind that he would be so appreciative of everyone and he would be overwhelmed. He wouldn't believe it," says Aunt Jill Tipton.

Tipton helped organize Saturday's donation drive.

"There's a whole other world over there and we need to do what we can to support those guys," Tipton says.

In all, volunteers packed 350 boxes to send to 350 soldiers. They say they have supplies to fill about 350 more, they're just waiting to get more boxes at the post office.

Gross's family and friends were able to raise close to $2,000 Saturday. They plan to use the money to build a veteran's park in Montgomery County.


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