Henry County Hometown Hero George Metz returns from helping Ukrainian refugees cross the boarder

Cheryl E Preston

George Metz helps UkranainsScreenshot Cheryl Preston

Local man is a hometown hero

Henry County is celebrating the bravery of one of its own citizens. George Metz recently returned to the Martinsville area as a hometown hero after spending several months in Ukraine. While many are trying to flee the war-torn land Metz chose to walk right into the thick of things and his journey was amazing.

Here is what he shared according to ABC News 13. "I actually, with my five bags, hitchhiked into the country. I took an Uber to the border. Then, I just started knocking on people's windows saying, 'Hey, can I get a ride with you to enter the country.' It's funny when looking back on it, I hitchhiked into our Warzone."

George Metz knew he had to act

Hitchhiking and ride shares in a dangerous areas sound like something out of a movie but it was very real. Metz began his fantastic journey with only $100 and bought a ticket to Germany where he rented a van, and drove himself to the border. He says he helped hundreds of refugees to make it across the Ukrainian border to safety. During that time, he says he began getting requests to assist with other things that were needed and decided to do what he could and shared the following:

"It's so beautiful to be there. As horrible as the situation is, it is beautiful because you get to see the strength of the people, you get to see how everyone plays their parts. There are old women who are sewing nets together that will be used for camouflage. There are little girls who are selling baked goods, in front of their house to send to their father's regimen. There's everyone coming together. It's really beautiful to see everyone playing their part," said Wetz.

The generosity of Henry County residents made it possible

Metz credits the generosity of the citizens in Martinsville and Henry County for helping to raise around seven thousand-dollars on his behalf. He said the money assisted thousands of struggling Ukranians and he believes the people donated because they knew the funds were going directly to help those in need and not for overhead fees. In March he told News 13 the following: "You know, changing our banner on social media is not going to do anything. What people need is action,” and he put his money where his mouth is.

George Metz was inspired to take action after corresponding with a friend who was fighting in Ukraine. After wishing him luck the friend responded with: 'If all you have are these empty words, don't waste my time or yours.' It was at this time when he reaIized he had to do something and so he did.

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I write, about breaking news, and current events. I wrote a newspaper column from 1997 to 2007 and have written for various online platforms since 2012 including Yahoo Contributor Network, Hubpages, and Vocal Media.

Roanoke, VA

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