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This Saturday, December 5th, you can help to support local vets through Woody's Home for Veterans while rocking out to live music in the parking lot at Bayou Thunder Saloon!

If you haven't been to Bayou Thunder before, it's on Market Street in Shreveport, just down from Coyote's Bar. They physical address is 1910 Market Street if you need it for your GPS. I've been to see several bands there over the summer in the parking lot and they have a great set up! In addition to live music, you'll also be able to grab one of their food plates and participate in the live auction and 50/50 raffle.

The event starts at 12 pm and will roll until closing. Basically, this is your chance to have a good time, socially distanced, outside with some really great people for an even better cause.

So why am I asking you to consider supporting Woody's Home for Veterans? As a media personality, I come in contact with a ton of different non-profits and other community organizations. This organization doesn't get near the recognition I think it should.

The mission of Woody's Home for Veterans is to help as many veterans as possible who suffer from mental health issues and give them a place to call home. Woody's was founded by Dr. Ronald Key in honor of his late father and other veterans like him in 2003.

Here's what Dr. Key has to say about Woody's:

Our veterans are the forgotten ones. Most remember and support the veterans who return from overseas with an obvious handicap. Our residents came back from their time of service with deep wounds not necessarily visible to the naked eye. Conditions such as (PTSD) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and depression, both brought about by the horrors of combat, can be devastating and permanently alter a person's life.

We provide a home and safe haven for our veterans. They can interact with one another, feel safe, and continue to receive the care they need and deserve. In 2008, we opened the doors to our second home and currently stay 90% or more.

We are accredited with the VA hospital. Locally, the VA has over 300 registered homeless veterans in our area and unsure of nonregistered. The numbers continue to grow in every town, city and state.

As the daughter of a retired Lt. Col in the United States Air Force who served two tours in Vietnam, I know how important our veterans are. I grew up around military bases surrounded by men and women who dedicated their careers and lives to serving our country. While my father didn't show the scars of his service during wartime, they were there. His time in Vietnam was the one thing he wouldn't talk about with me, ever, before he passed. Combine that kind of trauma with other issues like mental health issues, homelessness, etc... and you have the sad state of affairs that a lot of our veterans are living with today. Thankfully, my father was never in a position to need an organization like Woody's, however, had he needed it, I would hope that there was room. Every veteran should have a safety net. They've earned it.

All veterans deserve our respect and we owe it to them to provide a service for them, as they put it ALL on the line in service to us. As Dr. Key says, 'If not now, when? If not us, who?' Indeed.

I can go on, but this video can explain what Woody's does so much better. May God bless Dr. Key and the folks that make Woody's possible.

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