February 4, 2012
I'm former military, and a volunteer with USO's Dallas-Ft Worth Airport"Send Off" program, which works with troops returning to Afghanistan from R&R, every day. I'm one of seven volunteers on the Thursday shift, and we typically have about 100 - 200 outbound troops on a flight. The money donated to the USO enables us to have light snacks (chips, pretzels, candy bars, jerky, peanuts, gum etc.) and cold bottled water for the troops, and a cart of aspirin, bandaids, chapstick, eyedrops, shaving and cleanup supplies, etc. at the departure point. We also dispense donate books, magazines, and USO "Care Packages". Of our seven team members, the three men are all veterans, including a WW II infantryman (Battle of the Bulge), a Korean War veteran, and a Vietnam veteran. All four of the women are either married to veterans, or are widows of the veterans. We love our work as volunteers, and welcome the opportunity to work with these great troops and the families that come to see them off. We believe that the heart of the USO is with and for the troops; and that the number of volunteers far, far exceeds the paid staff. All of us, although not paid, actively financially support the USO because we are on the spot, and we see what is done for the troops and how much the USO is appreciated by them and their families. In short, it's a CALLING, and we believe our contributions help our soldiers, Marines, sailors, and airmen/women. We love the USO because we love the troops. God bless them, every one!
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