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Honoring our veterans: Frisco Lakes Veterans Day event supports local organizations
The Frisco Lakes veterans group presented the USO of Dallas/Fort Worth with a $2,650 donation. From left: David Maxfield, Don Haggard, Aneisa Watson, Sharon Gunrud and Ruth Stoneking. Photo courtesy of Sharon Gunrud.
While Veterans Day didn't feature the best weather conditions this year, that didn't stop more than 100 residents from attending the holiday's annual celebration at Frisco Lakes.
The event, which was preceded by a golf tournament, included a barbecue luncheon and special speakers. One of those speakers -- Cliff Sosamon, chief of the North Texas Military Association -- told attendees about his organization's work providing assistance to veterans transitioning to civilian life.
"Sosamon's group does a great job of helping young men and women who are returning from the current conflicts in the Middle East," said Dick Abernethy, a member of the Frisco Lakes veterans group. "The amount of troops coming home after being discharged from those conflicts has lowered considerably, but they're still returning."
Also speaking at the event was Frisco City Council Member Tim Nelson, a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve who recently returned to the city after a year's deployment.
The event wasn't just informative, however. The Frisco Lakes veterans group raised $2,650 for the USO of Dallas/Fort Worth and $500 for Defenders of Freedom, a nonprofit organization devoted to sending support boxes to deployed personnel and support wounded soldiers and their families.
David Maxfield, president of the Frisco Lakes veterans group, introduced three soldiers who have directly benefitted from funds donated to Defenders of Freedom. Those soldiers overcame war-related disabilities thanks to the organization.
"These groups all do a great job supporting military personnel and veterans," Abernethy said. "It was an honor for us to help serve as a fundraiser for them and help their initiatives."
Though the Frisco Lakes veterans group's golf tournament was their first, they're already preparing for the future.
"The golf tournament was well received by everyone who took part," Maxfield said. "It was so successful that we're again planning on doing it again."
For the residents of Frisco Lakes, the Veterans Day event provides a way to serve those who serve the United States.
"We've always had a Veterans Day celebration at Frisco Lakes as long as I've been here," Abernethy said. "Our veterans group and program is a great tie-in with the need for supporting the local USO, which is very much alive and well, although it doesn't quite have the number of people it used to. When all these things came together it was quite a successful program."