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A ‘Thank You’ to Troops


A VFW Post in Traverse City, Michigan, in March hosted Michigan National Guard troops whose mission was to administer COVID-19 vaccines to the public. 

Nearly 50 Guardsmen attended the “thank you” dinner at VFW Post 2780. Post Auxiliary President Vicki Luckey said she heard about the troops being housed in a nearby hotel with no laundry service available. She hooked them up with a local launderer which offers discounts to military personnel.

A member of the Minnesota National Guard administers a shot to a patient
A soldier with the Michigan Army National Guard administers a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Feb. 23 in Traverse City, Michigan. VFW Post 2780 in Traverse City hosted a thank you dinner for National Guard troops in March. The Michigan National Guard is helping vaccinate Michiganders. Photo by Master Sgt. David Eichaker.

But it made her think that those soldiers might like a home-cooked meal.

“Here they were serving in our area and living out of a hotel,” Luckey said. “I thought they were probably sick of eating pizza.”

Guardsmen were invited to the Post for a Salisbury steak dinner complete with homemade rolls and desserts. Auxiliary and VFW members worked together to pull off the event.

Afterward, some played pool and darts while others embarked on a push-up challenge. 

“It was so heartwarming to have our place filled with young military people,” Luckey said. “The camaraderie was truly wonderful.” 

According to a Michigan National Guard press release issued in February, troops have been helping the Michigan Department of Health and Human services with vaccine distribution. The Guardsmen performed various roles, including serving as vaccinators, assistants and post-vaccination observers.

Luckey added that the Auxiliary has persevered throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. At Christmas, they hosted a drive-thru Christmas where they served 400 dinners and handed out 250 stockings for children.

“We are very active and try to do what we can,” she said. “With the dinner we did, it was wonderful to have the younger generation here with us.”



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