National Salute to Veteran Patients:
Every year, Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers nationwide celebrates National Salute to Veteran Patients. This week-long celebration occurs the week surrounding Valentine's Day. The purpose of National Salute is to honor our Veterans; to encourage community support of our Veterans and to increase awareness of VA's role in providing comprehensive health care to our Veterans.
At the VA Medical Center, Fayetteville, North Carolina, they celebrated all week long by hosting visitors, distributing Valentine Day cards, and hosting special events. On February 11th, they had a Valentines Gift Distribution Day. Volunteers and service organizations donated items to stuff red gift bags for every hospitalized Veteran. One special gift was a hand-knitted red, white and blue afghan. Knitting groups throughout the community and from out-of-state worked all year on this special project to ensure that there were enough red, white and blue afghans to place in the gift bags. The Daughters of the American Revolution Brunswick Town Chapter was one of the participants in this special project. Norma Fraser, Chief, Voluntary Service stated "I want to thank the members of the Brunswick Town Chapter of the DAR for their generosity and continued support of our Veterans." There were over 40 afghans donated by the residents of Southport and St. James, as well as a few out of state participants.
Jerry Odom also had made 11 quilts for the deceased veterans. The quilts are placed on a veteran’s bed for one week to honor them. Jerry Odom and her daughter Ella Ruth Maugans are co-chair of the Veteran’s Committee. They visit the Veteran’s Center quite frequently with many donations of coffee, clothing, toiletries, afghans, quilts, socks, and sweat pants.
Norma N. Fraser
Chief, Voluntary Service
VAMC Fayetteville, NC