Bradford student is beneficiary of Foutz Foundation


GREENVILLE — The Foutz Foundation recently donated an alto saxophone to a fifth grade Bradford student, Raylan Byers. Jessica Shaffer, a children’s SSA from the Darke County Board of Developmental Disabilities heard of the foundation from an event held in June when a park bench was donated by the foundation and a guitar raffled off to raise funds and awareness of the organization.

Shaffer knew Byers was borrowing a saxophone from the school and needed an instrument he could take home and call his own. Per the foundation’s website, “There are so many benefits for a child to learn an instrument. It gives them confidence, teaches math skills, reading, writing, listening and more. Music is such a powerful tool that is not only a creative outlet, but helps express feelings and say things that are hard to express with words. We want to make sure that we can help as many children come out of their shells and realize their potential.”

What makes this donation even more special is that it was presented by the family of Karen Grote Bucklew who passed away in September. Shaffer said, “Karen was a good friend of Brian Foutz” (President and Founder of the Foutz Foundation) “they were in band together. He wanted to donate a saxophone in her honor and then my request for a saxophone for Raylan came through.” Bucklew played the saxophone at Greenville High School and was a huge supporter of the music program.

Courtney Bucklew, Karen’s daughter made the presentation. Other family members attending were Wayne Grote, Terri Grote, Douglas Grote, Courtney Bucklew, Cooper Bucklew, and Savannah Bucklew, and Adam Bucklew. In addition, Raylan’s family which includes grandparents Chris & Collette Yingst and siblings, Jamie Byers, Chaize Byers, and Rochelle Yingst all attended the presentation.

The Foutz Foundation is a 501(c)3 charitable organization founded in 2017. The mission of the foundation is to provide musical instruments for kids ages K through 12. They accept used instruments, refurbishes them, and then matches instruments with those who may need them at no charge. The Foundation has awarded over $5,000 in musical instruments to date. If you love music and need assistance, know someone who does, or just want to learn more about the Foundation or how you can help, please visit the website at

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