Carlisle Lodge 260 hosted its annual Veterans Appreciation dinner on Tuesday, November 19th. The dinner allows any Veteran, regardless if he is a Mason or no, to come to the lodge and enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner of turkey, ham, stuffing and all the fixings. This year was one of the largest turnouts in lodge history, with a sizable number of members and non-members coming to enjoy the comradery.
The evening began with a blood drive to help the Red Cross, which garnered a number of pints of blood. Shortly after, the social room began to fill with just under 200 people from every conflict since World War II. Walking around from table to table one could hear stories of days gone by. Memories from U2 spy plane missions, to sitting on the deck of naval ships while the guns were firing off, to reminders of how many have been lost over the years. The stories brought back cherished memories of those we served with and those we’ve lost. The event concluded with a group picture of all the veterans in attendance, which almost wrapped the front of the Great Hall two deep (pictured above).
In commemoration of all the veterans who have not been forgotten. Chester G Raudabaugh, PM (pictured to the right) handed out green light bulbs. The “Glowing Green” program is a non-profit organization which supports our local veterans. The green light bulb reminds us that “freedom isn’t free”, and we still have Veterans and their families that need help. Brother Chester has personally handed out 1,300 light bulbs in support of the organization, and does not seek any compensation for his efforts; and instead, requests any donations be made to the local VFW.
The night was an amazing display of fraternal love and appreciation for those who have sacrificed so much to allow us to maintain our fraternal order, and a stark reminder of why so many Veterans seek to join our ranks.