On Saturday, November 18, 2023, the Alpha Upsilon Chapter at the University of Mississippi honored U.S. Army veteran Tara Hutchinson on the field during the football game. The chapter, represented by Number I Brooks Stewart ’20 and philanthropy chair Effy Marks ’20, presented Hutchinson with an all-terrain track wheelchair to help regain her freedom and do things that normal wheelchairs cannot.
Tara was an Army Military Police Officer injured in combat in Iraq. In 2006, Sergeant First Class Hutchinson was the truck commander in her vehicle when the passenger side was penetrated with a shape charge improvised explosive device (IED) that ultimately claimed her right leg. After several surgeries, Tara was Medically Retired from the U.S. Army shortly after. She currently resides in San Antonio, Texas, with her service dog Porkchop, where the gift of an all-terrain track chair will give her the independence she desires.
“It is KA’s honor to be able to partner with the Independence Fund to aid someone who has done so much for our Nation,” Number I Brooks commented.
Founded in 2007, The Independence Fund is committed to serving the Warfighter Community by providing innovative programs and services to support the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual independence of our servicemembers, combat Veterans, their Caregivers, families, and those Allies who served in combat alongside our troops, through innovative mobility and adaptive technologies and therapies for combat Veterans; suicide prevention; caregiver and family support; and Veteran advocacy with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, other government agencies, federal and state legislators, and other partners.”