Fundraiser For Slain Soldier's Family -, GA News Weather & Sports

East Alabama

Fundraiser For Slain Soldier's Family

Turning a negative into a positive. That's what two military wives say they're hoping to do when Reverend Fred Phelps comes to Opelika this weekend.

Phelps is coming to protest Sgt. Christopher Taylor's funeral Saturday. To these women, he was a soldier who fought for the rights of others.

"That's the worst part about it. This man just died for him to be able to go and do this," said Danielle Sanders, the wife of an Army Drill Sergeant.

Phelps is highly outspoken against homosexuality. He believes God is killing America's soldiers because "gays are taking over the country." However, one woman says a group in Michigan has already dealt with the protesting pastor.

"He protested their bar, and they decided instead of counter-acting and counter-protesting him with signs, they decided to do a fundraiser," said Melissa Yoannon, the local fundraiser coordinator.

All these ladies are asking for is a nickel, dime or quarter pledge per minute that Phelps protests Taylor's funeral.

Yoannon asked, "I thought if we could do this and get some money for Sgt. Taylor's wife, to make up for this man putting such a stain on the last peaceful moment she has with him, why not?"

"That's already enough of a burden on the family to have to deal with that, especially with the kids. Then have some guy sharing his views on something that has nothing to do with the family," said Sanders.

Yoannon has set up a phone number and e-mail address where you can send your pledge.

"They can just e-mail me their name, phone number and what they want to pledge. I'll get back to them and give them the information where they can send the money to."

She said it's the least they can do in this time of grief.

"If he wants to spill his hate, we'll spill our love and money."

If you wish to make a pledge, you can contact Yoannon at (706)366-0945. To e-mail your information, send it to

If you wish to make a flat donation, you can do so by stopping by or sending it to any Charter Bank location. In Opelika, you can call (334)742-0266. The mailing address is:

Charter Bank
114 S. 7th Street
Opelika, AL 36801

Make your donation to the Sgt. Christopher Taylor Fund. There are two accounts, so you need to specify the one for which you wish to donate. One is set up for "wife and kids," and the other is just "kids."

--Written by: Brock Parker

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