Food, Clothes, and Camaraderie Served at Veterans Stand Down - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Food, Clothes, and Camaraderie Served at Veterans Stand Down

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Past and present stood in line sharing stories about military life and helping each other through what can be a difficult task.

"It's something that everybody needs to do a little more often," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Craig Claudio.  

Active duty military members at the Veterans Stand Down at First Baptist Church volunteered their time Thursday to help homeless veterans get back some of the basic needs for life: food, clothes, and camaraderie.

"I'm very proud to see young sailors," said James Carlisle. "They are a lot bigger than we were back in '64 and I like them. The military really looks impressive now."

Like others at the stand down, retired Machinist Mate 2nd Class James Edward Carlisle comes from a military back round, but is now a veteran without a home.

"I retired from the University of Florida-- go Gators," said Carlisle. "Then I had some problems and I ended up like everyone else."

"You know a lot of these veterans have different needs so we've got a variety of different services free of charge that we can provide for them," said Gulf Coast Workforce Center Director Maria Goodwin.

So Claudio this is the least he can do.

"These guys have served they've worked their butts off," said Claudio. "They don't get enough attention. They need the little bit of help--whatever we can give them."

And Carlisle will be taking much more from Thursday's Stand Down than just a few T-shirts and some food. But, a bond created between two Sailors.

"I hope to take the sea bag away and the thoughts that Mr. Claudio told me about the new Navy," said Carlisle.  

More than a dozen Bay County organizations donated their services for Thursday's stand down.