Polly Keener reports on the GLC visit to the Brecksville VA Medical Center (Northeastern Ohio) on April 29th, taking place concurrently with the Dayton VA visit by a second task force of members.
Polly: "Ron Hill made a nifty PR flyer for the event, which (husband) Bob and I took to the hospital a few days in advance so it could be duplicated and posted. We were given a fascinating tour of this large facility which is, unfortunately, slated to be closed sometime in the future. Lovel Henderson, Jr., Volunteer Services Coordinator, worked very hard to provide what we requested and also had pizza and wings for the veterans, so we had a full house in the Recreation Hall,"
"Ron Hill, Mark Szorady, Don Peoples, my daughter Whitney Keener and I went there, while other chapter members visited the Dayton VA Hospital, in southern Ohio."
"60 or more people of all ages including some family members of patients and personnel. Several were in wheelchairs and there were World War II, Korea, and Vietnam vets in the audience, as well as others. The center has a WW I veteran there, who may have attended too."
"We took turns presenting information about what we do and drew on an overhead projector. We also told them a bit about the NCS/USO history of affiliation from way back. I mentioned my family members service in the military and got spontaneous applause when mentioning my son as a Naval Aviator and a cousin who was an Air Force pilot."
Don Peoples' turn at the overhead.
Above and below: Mark Szorady
"While we spoke, Ron Hill did spectacular caricatures of 30 or more vets around the room. They really loved these. Mark, Don, and I also chatted a bit with individuals after the presentation and did some sketches. We handed out 30 tins of mints with cartoon characters on them and 30 booklets of the puzzle features Mark and I do for DBR Media. It was pleasing that the nurses requested extra puzzle books to use for "therapy." Additionally, we brought four paperback books of cartoons to donate to the library but they walked off with individual vets."
"Whitney Keener was our roving photographer who got the ground rules for who and what could and could not be photographed."
"Altogether, we had an excellent day. Were there about 2 1/2 hours and would have stayed longer to chat with the vets but it was their dinner time."
- Polly Keener