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North Ridgeville veteran finds a way to honor fellow veterans by preserving historical documents

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Posted at 7:36 AM, Nov 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-02 07:36:50-04

LORAIN, Ohio — Right now veteran Gene Kleinholz is also finding his own way to honor local veterans, by working tirelessly to preserve historical documents.

He recently found a photo during an estate sale of more than 300 local World War II veterans, but he couldn't make out the names because they were so small and worn down.

So he posted the photo to the North Ridgeville Historical Society's Facebook page.

One by one, families started reaching out, identifying the soldiers.

“When you look at these names, actually the guy that started it had the dry cleaners down the street. And so many times we look at our neighbors, but we don't understand their experience,” said Kleinholz.

People from all over the country also started sending him medals, letters and other artifacts from North Ridgeville members of the armed forces during WWI, WWII and even the Civil War.

Kleinholz pointed out letters from the North Ridgeville Historical Society read, “These are the actual writings, copies of the actual writings of the five North Ridgeville boys killed at the Battle of Gettysburg.

As a person who's lived here for 67 years, worked my whole life here, I never once knew that five North Ridgeville residents were killed at Gettysburg.”

Kleinholz says his goal is to share these stories and artifacts in order to help people understand the sacrifices the generations before us made. And he believes it will help make our country a better place.

RELATED: Lorain County public library team to deliver 'Thank You' cards to veterans signed, created by residents

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