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Red Cross Honors Local Veterans at Celebration

PHILADELPHIA — On Tuesday November 11, Veterans Day, the American Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania (SEPA) will hold a ceremony at the 23rd Street Armory in Philadelphia to honor local Veterans. CEO Judge Renée Cardwell Hughes will be joined by Red Cross Services to the Armed Forces Volunteers, Red Cross leadership and staff as well as local dignitaries including SEPA Board members Eric Helt of PECO, Darrel German of Wells Fargo who is an Army Veteran and Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Derrick J.V. Sawyer who is also a vet. American Red Cross Divisional Disaster Executive and retired Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps, Scott Graham will deliver a keynote address. SEPA will honor graduates of its Nursing Assistant Training program who are former military or come from military families, and three veterans who earned medals in the National Veterans Wheel Chair Games in Philadelphia this August. The Veterans Day event will begin at 10:30 a.m. Members of the Harley’s Owner Group, some who are also veterans will kick off the ceremony by riding into the Armory.

SEPA is proud of its work with local veterans and its partnerships with the organizations that serve them; however, despite the commitment of volunteers, homeless veterans have difficulty accessing information and services that exist to help them get back on their feet. The Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces (SAF) team works with area veteran service organizations to help bring free veteran-specific programs and services directly to veterans.

One such program is Totes of Hope. For months, SEPA has been collecting comfort items to be packaged in small totes. After the ceremony at the Armory, 200 of these totes will be delivered to three local veteran’s service organizations that support homeless veterans in the Philadelphia area: Support Homeless Veterans, The Veterans Group and Project Home. The totes contain items like toothbrushes, soap, dental floss, band aids, t-shirts, socks, rain ponchos and pocket tissues. In addition, there is information about essential support programs offered by local agencies and notes of thanks. The totes will be delivered by Red Cross volunteers as well as students from a Red Cross Club from the Girard Academic Music Program.

About the American Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org and redcrossphilly.org and follow us on Twitter at @RedCross and @redcrossphilly.