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Local Veterans Groups Assist Troops

Brighton area veterans organizations are helping active military troops have happier holidays this season.

The American Spirit Centre on E. Grand River in Brighton has had a busy  season, according to American Legion Commander Bob Higley. The center is home to  Post 4357, American Legion Post 235, and both organizations' auxiliary groups.

Higley said the Ladies Auxiliary group of VFW Post 4357 helps active duty troops overseas on an ongoing basis, especially during the holidays.

"The Ladies Auxiliary shipped 150 care packages overseas just prior to Thanksgiving," said Geneva Fredenburg, who spearheaded the effort, adding that it was meant to let troops know the local community here cares and supports their efforts fighting to protect our freedom.

"The local Boy Scouts pitched in to help wrap the packages for shipment," she added.

On Christmas Day the group will volunteer at the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans in Detroit, serving lunch to residents of the facility. The NCHV is a Michigan organization that takes in homeless veterans for up to one year, and offers them emergency support for housing, food, health care, job training and placement, and legal aid.

The Ladies Auxiliary also adopted three families for the holidays and began delivering needed goods last week, Fredenburg said. The families are not in the military, but the community showed interest in helping them and the auxiliary responded, she said.

Fredenburg said other Livingston County organizations are also involved in support of the Armed Services, including Fowlerville and Howell high school students and the Livingston Mom's Club. Their support of U.S. Active military troops is greatly appreciated, she said, as evidenced by the plethora of mail and e-mail the young men and women send in thanks.

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