OKEECHOBEE — After the death of her husband in 1993, Merry Milne made it her business to thank every veteran she meets. “I promised him on his deathbed I would always respect and care for veterans,” she said. Her husband, Daniel Kenneth Milne served in the Army in Vietnam and passed away due to Agent Orange exposure in 1993. “It always bothered him that nobody took the time to say thank you to veterans. I promised him I always would,” said Milne.
Since that time, Milne has found several ways to show her love and appreciation to veterans. When she lived in Maine, she supplied Thanksgiving turkeys to veteran families. “I made sure every year I did something for veterans,” she said. Beginning about seven years ago, her church, The Gathering, allowed her to hold a Veterans’ Day Dinner in their fellowship hall.
The dinner this year is spaghetti and is for all veterans, active duty and spouses. No reservation is required. Just show up on Saturday, Nov. 4 any time between 5:30-8 p.m. The Gathering is located at 1735 S.W. 24th
Milne hosts the dinner with help from her church family but also from some members of the community. Bruce and Mary Anne from Big Lake Mission help with the meat. Her biggest donor is Alfredo from the vegetable stand in the flea market by Home Depot. “That man takes care of all my vegetables. He’s so generous and helpful.”
“I really enjoy it. The veterans are always so appreciative that people take the time to say thank you.”