CHICAGO - The third Saturday of August is a big day each year for UAW Local 588, when members of the Veterans Committee host the Annual Veterans Day Barbecue at Manteno Veterans Home, 25 miles south of Chicago Stamping Plant.
On Aug. 18, 2012, UAW Local 588 hosted their twelfth Annual Veterans Day Barbecue. “This is our way of letting Veterans know that they’re not forgotten,” said Harry O’Halloran, Local 588 Veterans Committee Board Advisor. “It is a wonderful day. We’re told that it is many of the residents’ favorite days of the year.”
This annual event is put on for over 300 residents of the home each year and would not be successful without the many volunteers who travel to assist from all over the Chicago area for the day. This year, Local 588 was assisted by the Jr. ROTC of Bloom Trail Hills High School, the American Legion Riders of Indiana, American Legion of Manteno Color Guard and several local antique car clubs.
The Veterans Committee spends the entire year fundraising and preparing for this event. This year at Manteno, the day was filled with food, games and prizes, live music and an antique car show. All money raised above the cost of the barbecue was put towards the Veterans’ Wish List and funds that directly benefit the residents of the home.
UAW Region Ford Veterans have been hosting these barbecues for up to 15 years in some areas and hope to continue to grow. The next event for 2012 will take place on the third Saturday of September in Minnesota, where four Local 588 members will be traveling to volunteer their time.