DENVER (CBS4) – Thanksgiving is a time for many families to get together, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1 in Denver made sure the nation’s military veterans were not alone.
They came for a meal, as there was no family around to share one. But as veterans, they share a bond that goes beyond family.
Teresa Rearick met her husband Dan while serving with the Marines. They both volunteered to spend their Thanksgiving day at the VFW.
“We want to feed them when they are homeless, we want to give them clothes when they are homeless. We want to take care of them. They served our country, we need to serve them,” she said.
Serving they did, and not just turkey on Thanksgiving.
“We were at the airport last night helping any veteran that came in, or any active duty we offered free rides in the metro area to any of them,” said Dan Rearick.
This is VFW Post #1, the first post in the nation. Their devotion to service and remembrance is inspiring.
“I think it’s important that we give a lot of recognition to the veterans who are getting killed and maimed,” Mark Jester said, who served in the Air Force.
When veterans say thank you for your service, they also say thank you to those who did not come home. 110 flags on display represent the 110 Coloradans killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“Vietnam especially, because they were treated like it was their fault, they had to go to war and they never got a thank you for coming home,” Dan Rearick said.
A team of volunteers pitched in to do their part for the Post and veterans it serves.
“Taking care of our veterans is very important, they went out and took care of us, they’ve come back home and we need to take care of them. So to see them out on the streets, it’s a sad thing,” Kim Tompkins said, who worked in the Navy.
But it was comforting to know those in need of a good meal and the friendship of fellow veterans did not go hungry on Thanksgiving.