Posted: 5:35 p.m. MST
Thanksgiving--a time to give thanks for loved ones, is also a time when men and women, who serve in the military, often are apart from those they love.
"It's not unusual. Our families are pretty resilient and they get used to that type of lifestyle," said USMC Lt. Col. Craig Wirth with VMAT-203. "But we're just thankful that the American Legion can provide a little home away from home with a meal and some downtime."
The American Legion Post 19 in Yuma welcomed about 220 veterans and active-duty military members for the annual Thanksgiving dinner.
"It really shows that people love and appreciate what you're doing, because some people don't understand that we do sacrifice a lot, and it puts us out from our family," said VMAT-203 Staff Sgt. Jason Bolz.
"It's a group of people who know the position that we're in, who know the things that we have to go through on a daily basis, inside and out, so the fact that they're willing to extend a hand out and do something amazing like this is really--it's just an amazing thing," said Sgt. Paul Genzale with VMAT-203.
This Thanksgiving meal is the American Legion Post 19's way of giving back to those who served the country, said the commander of Post 19, Terry Greene.
"When I was in the military and was gone, nobody ever did this for us. So I'm glad we could help them to do this," Greene said.