TEMPLE, Texas: Patrick Arryn, who has organized a protest to honor fallen Fort Hood soldiers and a fundraiser for their families, is defending his decision to use his own website for donations rather than a GoFundMe page.

“The reason why we didn’t use GoFundMe is because there’s a lot of scams out there,” Arryn said. “There’s a lot of fake Go Fund Me’s that are literally copying and pasting from individuals who have good intentions to support these families.”

In the efforts to raise $10,000 for the soldiers’ families, people on social media were thrown off when they were directed to a website which features stories and merchandise from some of Arryn’s other causes, including Black Lives Matter.

Some even started sharing photos with a red “x” through the flier and told people not to donate to it.

“I am not putting my energy towards my doubters and my haters,” Arryn said. “I am putting my energy to make sure that we support these families, to make sure that we stand up for justice for these families, and that just comes with this platform.”

Arryn claims he has shown full transparency through the process, even allowing for people to drop off donations at Bird Creek Burgers in Temple, a local small business that he says people trust.

He also had a message for those doubting where the money is going.

“100% of these donations will go to the families, I’m actually funding the whole event out of my own personal pocket,” Arryn said. “I won’t make a penny off of this event, so that’s the reason why we chose to use ‘changeisherectx.com’ because the platform is protected.”

He wants the to keep the attention on the protest itself, set for Sunday night at 7 p.m. on North Main Street in Temple, and how it has affected so many.

“Of course Vanessa is getting so much national attention, but there are so many more cases going on the base such as Gregory Morales that is getting overlooked because of the national attention from Vanessa, which I don’t see anything wrong with,” Arryn said. “I want individuals to know there is many more cases.”

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