Dozens of veterans got to Christmas shop for their families on Sunday and pick out whatever they wanted at the Veteran’s holiday shop in the Pocatello Veteran’s Home.
KPVI News that Works for You talked to veteran’s to see what this means to them to be able to go holiday shopping and get a gift for their family.
“Good godfrey, I thought I had been shopping at Kmart or someplace. Beautiful assortment,” says Veteran, Earl Forrest.
Earl Forrest was one of the many veterans shopping for his wife Sunday at the veteran’s Christmas shop. He picked out an afghan blanket for his wife.
The annual veteran’s holiday shop allows residents to pick out gifts they can share with loved ones free of cost.
Resident Bobbie Anderson was excited for the event.
“It’ lets me go shopping. I love it, love it, love it,” says Bobbie Anderson, Veteran’s Home Resident.
Toni Gimpel with the American Legion Auxiliary tells KPVI that over a thousand gifts are donated for the 51 residents at the Pocatello Veteran Home to give to their families for Christmas.
“They sign their name and join the military and fought for us and were willing to die for us. The least we can do is to remember them and not let them be forgotten in a home without any presents or remembering of Christmas for their families,” says Toni Gimpel, American Legion Auxiliary.
Dan Scarbrough was a Marine for 24 years. He was proud of the military blanket he picked out for his daughter.
“I appreciate the chance to do this and I hope my daughters will really like the gifts I picked for them. I’m sure they will,” says Marine Veteran Dan Scarbrough.
It was veteran Air Force pilot Jack Kramer’s first time at the Christmas shop. He was thankful for the opportunity to get gifts for his family.
“This is a very unique experience for me. I have never done this before,” says Air Force Veteran Jack Kramer.
Gimpel says the veteran’s Christmas shop is possible because of a national program.
ALA members collect and make gifts all year round to add to the 8 to 9 thousand dollars worth of gifts that are donated.
The ALA also wraps and sends the gifts to the veteran’s family and each resident of the home also gets a gift of their own to open on Christmas day.