Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Four friends, a group of Veterans, and a day to remember

Words cannot express today. Today, on the anniversary of the tragedy of September 11, 2001 we celebrated and thanked the women and men who served our country and protected our freedoms; we being three amazing friends and myself.

Nancy Wallace, Renee Hoyt, Lauren Wallace, and I all showed up at the New England Center and Home for Veterans in Boston for the opportunity and pleasure to serve lunch to approximately 118 Veterans.

Nancy, Lauren, Renee
We not only served the meal to the Veterans, but we had the honor of thanking every single one of them for their service.
One gentleman not only thanked me (which surprised me) for the special meal and told me how much us being their made their day, but he came back after eating his lunch, shook my hand, and told me that our support put a smile on his face. I have to tell you his man brought tears to my eyes.
It wasn’t all tears. There were hair nets, and gloves, aprons, and grins. There were a lot of laughs, and, handshakes, a lot of getting trays so a Veteran could pile on the dessert (cupcakes from http://nancysmarshview.com/) or carrying trays to a table if someone needed help. 
Cupcakes for dessert

It was tugging chocolate lollipops from their stands or handing a Veteran extra sodas so he could stick them in his toiletry bag and take back to his room for later.

There were discussions of football…thanks to all of us girls wearing New England Patriots’ T-shirts. Quite the icebreaker.
Ice cream line
At one point when I was handing out ice cream, CJ Beck, the Philanthropic Officer at New England Center and Home for Veterans (community.support@nechv.org) and organizer of the hosted meals program and I were chatting and he asked me what I thought. With no thought necessary, I responded, “Who wouldn’t want to do this every day.”

You will walk in nervous, excited, and not knowing what to expect. You will walk out feeling as if you just spent the best few hours of your life with the most amazing men and women you will ever have the privilege to meet.

New England Patriots' shirts
If you are tempted to do this and I hope you are, you will find it an amazing experience for yourself and the Veterans you will be serving. These folks are deserving and thankful knowing that someone really cares.

Honestly, there are no words to express this experience other than maybe honor, respect, humbling, emotional, and the best thing I have ever done.

I cannot wait to do it again! And we will, in December. If you would like to contribute to that event and be a part of thanking our Veterans, please go here and make a donation: https://www.youcaring.com/new-england-center-and-home-for-veterans-578096

Packing for the event
Just because!

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