Saturday’s local Disabled American Veterans holiday celebration at the Veterans Building didn’t include Santa Claus. Nope, and there was no caroling, a decorated Christmas tree or brightly-wrapped packages.
But there was a lot of love, spirit, and fellowship.
About 110 folks from Culver City and neighboring communities came out on a warm Dec. 1 morning to take part in the Culver City DAV Lillian Bushnell Chapter 123’s annual Christmas party.
Stephen Hall, Chapter 123 commander, and Caroline Morris, commander of the DAV Auxiliary and Senior Vice Commander of the State Auxiliary, addressed their guests with short speeches prior to lunch.
The event is a “celebration, not a fundraiser,” Morris told the NEWS.
“Except for the chicken, all of the food is brought by members. They make all of the food items,” which was served buffet-style.
A five-piece band, “Giving Music” of Los Angeles entertained attendees. There was also a donation raffle, with a 50/50 drawing.
Cost to stage the annual event runs about $350 and the raffle and donations bring in about $600, which offsets expenses, DAV 123 officials said.
Those contributing to this year’s party included LaRocco’s Pizza, Pavilion in Culver City, Costco, as well as individuals Marlene Evans, Mary White, Kat Stovall, Isabelle Vigil, Paul Jeffries, Caroline Morris, Stephen Hall, and Albert Vera.
Among the attending officers, local and visiting, included Fred Powers and son, Rellon Powers, of Bakersfield, Ron Vogel, and Paul Thetreau.
Joseph Fiumefreddo, DAV 123 Treasurer, said he was disappointed that invited city officials were not in attendance. He said that only recent council candidate Vera accepted an invitation.
The Culver City DAV 123 is dedicated to a single purpose: empowering veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity. They accomplish this by ensuring that veterans and their families can access the full range of benefits available to them; fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life.