Several attendees are shown at the recent holiday meal event. (Photos courtesy of Casey J. Carter.)
Several attendees are shown at the recent holiday meal event. (Photos courtesy of Casey J. Carter.)
Courtesy of Highland County Veterans Service Office

The Highland County Veterans Service Office held a special holiday meal for veterans in the community on Dec. 23 at the Hi-TEC Center. This event concluded a nearly monthlong venture in helping veterans' families in extra-special ways for the holiday season.

This holiday meal wasn’t a pre-planned event on the HCVSO’s Outreach calendar, but one that came to fruition thanks to the Hillsboro Christian Academy’s Veterans Food Drive that was held in November.

The HCA food drive – along with food items donated by Sheryl Sheeley and her department at R&L Carriers in Wilmington – netted enough non-perishable foods to help nearly 25 veterans families, plus left a significant residual of several canned vegetable varieties, which led the HCVSO’s staff to the idea of hosting a meal for area veterans who may not have family that lives near them here in our community.

With the help of several donors, volunteers and even Santa, the holiday meal for veterans provided a home-cooked meal for more than 30 veterans and their spouses/families, plus toys for their children/grandchildren and hosted a total of around 65 attendees.

Many, many thanks to all our event sponsors and volunteers: Hillsboro Christian Academy, Kroger (Hillsboro), Save-A-Lot (Hillsboro), David Lowell, Bill and Marjorie Pike, Randy and Angie Mustard, Vicki Knauff, Tara Campbell, Gary and Deanna Smaltz, Kevin and Paula Barreras, Ekko Lane and Zach Anderson, Cody and Chance Lane, Rick and Becky Williams, Steph Roland, Shawn Carter, Casey Jean Carter, Tim Hazelwood, Barb Suttle, Jen and Michaela Hughes, Kathe and KC Chaney, Christie Simmons, Sheryl Sheeley (R&L Carriers), Dollar Tree (Hillsboro)/Operation Homefront and the Highland County Homeless Shelter/Greg Hawkins.