Hometown Heroes - Phillips 66 Veterans Network

Published: Dec. 8, 2022 at 4:49 AM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Seeing a need in their community, former members of the military now working at Philllips 66 in Westlake, have formed the Veterans Network. Their ongoing Good Energy Food Drive has resulted in over 3700 pounds of food being donated to the Westlake Little Food Pantry, according to Alberto Maxwell, a veteran of Operation Desert Storm.

“We started this off with no clear vision as to what it would turn into,” recalled Maxwell, Phillips 66 employee and U.S. Army veteran. “We were pretty much humbled and surprised by the overwhelming support from our employees here within the refinery. So, the Phillips 66 family, approximately 780 employees or so, pretty much everyone contributed in one way or another.”

William Ducotey is a Marine veteran and served in Iraq.

“I think it’s in us,” says Ducotey. “I think that’s what makes us tick. It’s part of who we are. The fact that Phillips 66 gives our veterans the opportunity to continue that selfless, I want to give back to the community, I want to help, I want to move the needle is tremendous.”

Members of the Phillips 66 Veterans Network will be grand marshals for the Westlake Rotary Christmas parade on Saturday, December 10, 2022. Marine veteran Christian Barras will be among them.

“Just to think that there’s people out there that a canned good can make their life better,” said Barras. “Just one more meal a day could certainly improve their quality of life. That kind of hurts knowing that there are people in the community like that. It certainly helps knowing we can change that.”

The Veterans Network has 70 members, which represents about 10 percent of the employees at the Phillips 66 complex. The Westlake Rotary Christmas Parade will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday, December 10, 2022. It starts at St. John Bosco Catholic Church, heads north on Sampson to Westlake High School.