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Jim Beam, Walmart give 550 dinners to Fort Campbell families

By Jake Lowary , Clarksville Leaf Chronicle

1876 days ago   Article ID# 791297
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Operation Homefront

CLARKSVILLE , TENNESSEE (Clarksville Leaf Chronicle) - Misty Bone's husband came home for mid-tour leave in time for Christmas, and with two small kids, she wasn't planning on fixing a big dinner with all the trimmings.

That plan changed Thursday when she took home the supplies for a full Christmas dinner free of charge as part of a giveaway by Operation Homefront, Beam Global, Walmart and some 30 other sponsors.

"We'll figure it out," Bone said, planning to scout for recipes online or in cookbooks.

Beam Global, which manufactures and sells Jim Beam Kentucky bourbon, has hosted three events with Operation Homefront at military installations to give back 1,000 Christmas dinners this year. Fort Hood, Texas, and Naval Station Great Lakes, Ill., were the other locations.

The giveaway was focused on junior enlisted soldiers ranked staff sergeant to private — the lowest paid of all soldiers. For many with families, the cost of presents, food and travel can add up. Operation Homefront wanted to give "a little bit of Christmas cheer," said Carly Samuelson, Operation Homefront director of development and special events.

"It'll take the burden off a little bit," Samuelson said. "They've got enough to worry about — their holiday meal shouldn't be one of them."

The initial list of 400 recipients was full only three days after the giveaway was announced, Samuelson said. Then Walmart brought an extra 150 meals for Thursday's effort.

Jerry Summers, director of community relations for Beam Global, and A.J. Holley, director of change management, said Beam Global has stepped up its appreciation efforts for the military in recent years, giving more than $2.5 million to Operation Homefront alone.

"That's our culture," Summers said. "We give back."

Copyright 2016 Clarksville Leaf Chronicle   (Copyright Terms)
Updated 1876 days ago   Article ID# 791297

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