Ever since 2011, local author, police officer and U.S. Army veteran Frank Zafiro has been donating the proceeds from sales of the ebook editions of "The Last Horseman", his suspense novel set in Spokane, to ReMIND.org, a national organization that does many things to help injured service members and returning veterans.
Zafiro was able to exceed his goal for 2012 and give $1,202.30 to the organization. In a recent update on his blog, Zafiro thanked his readers and encouraged them to learn more about ReMIND.
According to the ReMIND website, "The Bob Woodruff Foundation is the national nonprofit that helps ensure our nation’s injured service members, veterans and their families return to a homefront ready to support them. Read more at About Us.
"ReMIND.org is a public education movement of the Bob Woodruff Foundation that educates the public about the needs of injured service members, veterans and their families as they reintegrate into their communities."
Some people in the Spokane area may be aware of ReMIND because of their annual Stand Up for Heroes fundraiser events. Musicians and comedians such as Bruce Springsteen, Robin Williams and Ricky Gervais gather to help support the people the organization serves.
On his blog, Zafiro discussed why he has chosen to support ReMIND.
According to Zafiro, "In January 2011, I decided that I would donate 100 percent of my ebook proceeds from The Last Horseman to ReMIND. Why do this? Because I believe in what ReMIND is doing. I’m a veteran myself, but was lucky enough not to have needed services like the ones this program provides.
"I believe we have a duty to take care of those men and women brave enough to serve in our armed forces and protect our freedoms. It’s not about whether or not you believe in a particular political action or not — it’s about supporting our troops, and healing the wounds (physical and otherwise) that they incurred while serving our nation. Serving us.
"Why this book? Because Sandy Banks, the main character, is a veteran. He saw combat, and he was irrevocably affected by it, so this book seemed like a perfect fit."
In 2011, Zafiro raised about $140 for the organization. His goal for 2012 was $500.
According to Zafiro, "Thanks to strong sales the last several months, that goal has been reached and more than exceeded. So thank you, mystery readers!"
Zafiro added that he plans to do even more from now on to support ReMIND.
"Originally, this campaign was going to be just for 2011. Then I decided to extend it to 2012 in order to make a more meaningful donation and continue to raise awareness.
"Now I am going to continue this campaign indefinitely by making November (the month we observe Veteran’s Day) the month every year in which I will donate 100 percent of proceeds from The Last Horseman to Remind.Org. Not just ebook sales this time, but also paperback and audio book sales, too.
"I hope that some people join in supporting our returning troops in some fashion. If you buy a copy of The Last Horseman to make it happen, cool. If you investigate Remind.org or the Wounded Warrior Project, or any of several other worthy groups who help our returning veterans, even better. At the very least, keep these men and women in your thoughts. They truly are heroes."
Readers from the Spokane area who prefer to shop locally may also find the print edition at local retailers such as Auntie's Bookstore.
Buying the book is a win/win proposition for crime fiction fans in the Spokane area. Not only do they get to read an exciting, fast-paced story set in the Lilac City, but they get to help support a worthy cause at the same time.