By Airman 1st Class Tara A. Williamson
Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst Public Affairs
JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST – The joint base will be hosting its holiday meal celebrations Dec. 25, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the North and West Side dining facilities.
Leadership from across the base will take turns serving a holiday meal, for the fifth year as Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, to service members who aren’t able to be with their families during the holidays.
“It’s nice being on the supporting side and being able to serve folks as they’re coming through,” said Col. Elizabeth Eidal, 87th Mission Support Group commander. “[Over Thanksgiving] we saw people in uniform and knew they were working that day. It’s nice, as commanders, to see those we’re helping.”
More than 25 commanders, chiefs and first sergeants participated in the Thanksgiving meal this year, some bringing their family members as well.
Joint base leadership takes this chance to spend time with not only service members and their families, but also the retirees who stop in for the holiday meals.
“[The meals help] our retirees, too. They say ‘we stand on the shoulders of greatness,’ and to give back to those who paved the way for us, makes you feel good,” Eidal said.
Service members and civilians who will be working during the meal say they enjoy the feeling of giving back, as well.
Tech. Sgt. Amber Rosser, Halvorsen Hall facility manager, said, “I know how important these meals are to military members. I was an airman in the dorms at one time.”
Adrianne Dash, Halvorsen Hall cook supervisor, said she too has spent time in the dorms as a junior enlisted member and knows how it feels to be away from family during the holidays.
“It’s good when you’re away from home to have that warm fuzzy. It’s not mom’s or grandma’s meal, but it’s still a wonderful meal setup just for those who couldn’t get home.”
More than 150 military personnel, family members and retirees attended the Thanksgiving meal.
“I don’t know if active-duty service members outside of the dorms understand they’re allowed to bring their family members,” Rosser said. “I don’t know if that’s publicized enough.”
Families throughout the joint base are welcome to join the holiday festivities along with dorm residents, personnel working through the holidays and retirees and their families.
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