Orange, California (BROADVIEW MORTGAGE) July 5th, 2013
The Fourth of July this year was particularly meaningful for me. As in years past there were fireworks, food, and loud patriotic music. The twist this year was that it all took place in the center of a hospital courtyard.
I had the honor of spending the Fourth of July at VA Hospital in Long Beach. Two of our bankers, [Broadview] and [Broadview], didn’t hesitate to throw some plastic gloves on and begin delivering BBQ tri-trip to the various hospital wards. Each patient received a firm handshake and a “thank you for your service to our country”.
After everything was said and done, we fed over 2,000 people that day.
The point of the BBQ was not to just say thank you and serve tasty food. It was to really get to know our veterans, show them that they are appreciated and not forgotten. Peter and Rick spent 15 minutes with one soldier, only reason they stopped talking? There was more food that needed to be delivered, otherwise they would’ve pulled up a chair!
On the car ride back we discussed the various things the vets had shared with us, their stories. Their very personal stories.
“One marine was totally built, this guy had biceps the size of grapefruits” remarked Pete, “but he had no legs. It gets me that he was one of the happiest patients we visited. He wouldn’t stop saying how much he appreciated the visit.”
Rick got recruited (pun intended) for the afternoon shift to help cook more meat and slice it up. “My arm was starting to get sore from sawing through all that darn meat!” remarked Rick in the car. As he was helping cleanup the meat slicing tent I approached Rick with an honored guest, General Reynolds, and introduced the two. The first words out of the General’s mouth were “Thank you. Thank you for coming out here today and helping with this event.” The look on Rick’s face was solemn and priceless, as was his response. “Sir, it’s the least we can do for our troops.”
To show our appreciation and continued commitment to the VA Hospital in Long Beach, we will be presenting a few gifts in the weeks to come. In the words of Rick, “it’s the least we can do.”
To all our men and women in uniform, those who gave some and those who gave all, thank you for your service and sacrifice.