Veteran’s Place hosting free Christmas dinner for those who have served

Updated: Dec. 23, 2018 at 2:56 PM CST
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LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Christmas is just around the corner, and for some people that served our country, this can be a hard time.

That's why one Leesville business is trying to make the holiday season a little easier.

It’s called Veteran’s Place; a half-business and half-non-profit organization that looks to help those who have served our country.

“All our veterans come over there and they need answers. They need help; how to get assistance. You have a lot of homeless veterans,” owner Jacqueline Murray said.

Holidays can be a difficult time for veterans, especially if family is not around.

“Because so many of them are forgotten, and it’s just an honor to be able to serve them,” volunteer Ann Herford said.

So, in conjunction with their toy drive, Murray hosted a Christmas dinner.

“We have people that come in and do homemade green beans, cornbread, collard greens. And the Jamaica Spot donated all the macaroni and cheese,” Murray said.

With the help of volunteers, they were able to bring the community a day of Christmas joy. For Heford, she’s remembering her dad who served in the U.S. Navy.

“Jack V. Robinson; I lost him about six years ago,” Heford said. “Anytime I hear about anything that the veterans are doing, I’m always happy to go and support them.”

As for veterans, the consensus is great.

“I think it’s wonderful,” veteran Edwin O’Banion said. “I’ve had a great time and I appreciate it.”

O’Banion is able to spend the holidays with his family, but said he knows many do not have that privilege.

“At times, we get together and talk about our experiences. People need to be thankful that they are home for Christmas.”

Murray said it’s that mingling and bonding that makes everything worthwhile.

“We need more. We need more in different locations. I wish there was more of me to just open up different places,” Murray said. “You know, I don’t have the money or the funds or anything, but if I did, I would open them up everywhere I could.”

Murray said even if she is unable to expand, she hopes she can continue to help veterans and the community in any way possible.

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