Honoring Our Heroes Event Big Hit with First Responders

By: David Norris Email
By: David Norris Email

COLLEGE STATION, Texas A grocery store in College Station did its best to make sure dozens of local heroes didn't go home hungry Wednesday.

The Honoring Our Heroes event kicked off around 11 a.m. at the Kroger store on Longmire and Rock Prairie. Emergency responders, military personnel and vets were the stars of the show.

Kroger co-manager Phillip Ingram said today's event was about 9/11 and first responders who continue to risk their lives to keep others safe.

"This is the 12th anniversary, so what we wanted to do was show our support to them by giving them a free meal," said Ingram.

Ingram knows the importance of honoring the men and women who serve their country. His Army unit was deployed to Iraq in 2003.

"Our unit lost eight soldiers," said Ingrim. "So this is something near and dear to my heart."

Ingram said this event is a small way for him to give back.

Kroger officials were pleased with the turnout. Tran Blake works for Kroger, but also served in the military. He said events like this one mean so much more than a free meal to those who've served.

"It shows that the community cares," said Blake. "They care about us before we ship off, they care about when we're gone and they care about us when we come home."

The event wasn't limited to first responders. Anyone who with an appetite for a tasty burger was invited. Kroger officials asked only for a donation. That money will be handed off to Aggie Veteran Adaptive Sports, a program designed to get injured vets involved in adaptive sports like wheelchair basketball and sitting volleyball.

Rejy Bacchus is heading up the program. He was wounded during a training exercise at Camp Pendleton.

"I went through a rough patch," said Bacchus. "I found the sport of sitting volleyball, and it helped me to get out of that rut that I was in."

Bacchus said he hopes this new program will help change change some lives.

"We're doing all we can to get veterans involved at A&M and througout the community," said Bacchus. "To help the guys that are injured both physically and mentally."

Kroger officials said they plan to do the event again next year.

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