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178th uses holiday to honor Veterans in need

  • Published
  • By Capt. Michael Gibson
  • 178th Wing Public Affairs
Airmen from the 178th Wing volunteered their off-duty time and provided new and gently used items to homeless veterans sheltered at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center Campus in Dayton Ohio, Nov. 11 to honor their service and provide needed assistance.

More than 20 Airmen donated a variety of items and spent time socializing with the veterans over a special Veterans Day dinner provided by the wing.

The Veterans Resource Center shelter is run by the Volunteers of America of Greater Ohio organization, which provides transitional housing and employment services for homeless veterans.

"This is the biggest outpouring of support from active or reserve forces we have seen," said Brad Brotbeck, Dayton VRC program director.

Brotbeck said many of their veterans become homeless through reasons out of their control and really appreciate what the 178th did for them.

"It means a lot that we honor these guys," said Brotbeck. "We are really thankful of what you have done for us today."

Capt. Jordan Hickey, 178th Force Support Squadron officer, coordinated the event and reached out to Brotbeck to see how the wing could support these veterans who had fallen on hard times.

"These veterans made a sacrifice to our country by serving before us," said Hickey. "We wanted to show our gratitude by making it easier to get back on their feet."

Donations included food for the event, artwork, clothing, cold weather gear, deep freezer, furniture, kitchen accessories, bus tokens and rec room items.

Hickey said that the donations will serve the veterans at different points of their transition from being homeless back to living on their own.

"This was a combined effort from all the base councils," said Hickey. "The Company Grade Officers, Chiefs, E-876, as well as the Airman and NCO Council each played a vital role for this event."