This past Monday 80 veterans and their families received, what was called, a “Thanksgiving Kit” with a turkey and all the fixin’s in time for tomorrow’s holiday.
The Haverhill Veterans of Foreign Wars Lorraine Post 29, working with Disabled and Limbless Veterans and the Middlesex County Deputy Sheriffs Association, provided the kits, which included a frozen turkey of about 12-14 pounds, boxed stuffing and instant mashed potatoes, fresh produce and dessert. One kit is expected to feed a family of four to six people.
VFW Senior Vice Commander Donald Jarvis said, “It was an honor to be able to work with not just the other veteran organizations, but the Middlesex Sheriff, Peter Koutoujian, and the Middlesex County Deputy Sheriffs Association to provide enough food for 80 Veterans and their families to have a Thanksgiving meal. In a sense the Haverhill VFW was able to provide over 300 thanksgiving meals this year to the local veteran community.”
In addition to the Thanksgiving kits, the Haverhill VFW also provided Veterans Northeast Outreach Center with boxes of fresh produce and other items for their food pantry. The operation itself was described as a “massive understanding that led to over 500 of these Thanksgiving kits being distributed to veterans across the state. American Legion 273 in Burlington hosted the distribution at their Post.
Post 29 Junior Vice Commander Keith Gopsill reflected on public perceptions of the VFW role, saying, “In the last few years we have proven the VFW is not a bar. It is more than just a building. We have continued the business of what it means to be a VFW member with our outreach, meals programs and service work. We have also helped local veterans facing food insecurities meet the growing challenges of putting food on their tables. We will continue to be there for our fellow veterans and their families.”
Post 29 Commander Shawn Watkins agreed. He said, “We as a Post know our veterans are going to need our support in some way. That’s why we always strive to do what we can to help and bring that support. When it comes to supporting veterans, we always partner up with other organizations and resources to truly maximize the support we bring. The VFW mission’s is to do what we can to be there for the veteran community, while as the same time building a great network of resources that support our cause. Together everyone achieves more.”
Those who wish to learn more about VFW Lorraine Post 29 may follow them on Facebook or visit vfw29.org.