With all of the shopping, travel and preparation the holidays can be stressful. But one local non-profit is trying to make sure veterans from northeast Wisconsin know that they're not forgotten about over the busy holiday season.
All the men and women who served our country were well aware when they signed up for duty that they may miss some major holidays.
"I don't miss all the weekends away for National Guard weekends or the deployments being away from my husband and my pets. But I do miss the camaraderie," says Julie Friedman of the Desert Veterans of Wisconsin group.
Julie Friedman served 22 years with Wisconsin's National Guard. But today her mission is to make sure veterans aren't forgotten about over the holiday.
"We wanted to do something special for them for Christmas," says Friedman.
Here at Veterans Manor in Green Bay the fifty veterans that live here will be given gift certificates, cards and a bit of love from other veterans.
"You have so many other people in different situations you could think of and they thought of us," says a recipient of the gifts Egypt Taisto who is a Navy veteran.
It's all courtesy of the Desert Veterans of Wisconsin group. They have fundraisers throughout the year to help pay for events like this.
"Just their time, that's what matters. It’s those gifts of the heart that you can't put a price on," adds Taisto.
The non-profit has been in the business of vets helping vets for 10 years now.
"They're not giving us handouts they're giving us hand-ups. You understand that it's a team work and so when prior military comes and helps us or remembers us it's significant no matter who.... But this is even more," says Taisto.
And while the holiday will be over before we know it. Its memories like these that remind veterans of a bond, a bond that continues long after the service ends.
The Desert Veterans of Wisconsin are always looking for new members and donations for vets who could use them across northeast Wisconsin. Check out the link below to find out how you can get involved.