Heart of the Valley YMCA continued its long tradition of honoring our men and women in Military service at the 14th annual YMCA Veterans Prayer Breakfast. Heart of the Valley YMCA kicked off Veterans Week in the Tennessee Valley by welcoming more than 275 Veterans, active-duty Military, dignitaries and members of the community to the Hogan Family YMCA on Nov. 8.
Lt. Gen. James Dickinson, Commanding General, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, provided the keynote address. The program included prayer led by Rabbi Eric Berk, Temple B’nai Sholom; and Chaplain (Col.) Mark A. Frederick, Command Chaplain, USASMDC. Patriotic music was provided by harpist Olivia Hitt and vocalist Michael Beutjer. The Bob Jones High School Air Force JROTC Honor Guard presented the colors and led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Heart of the Valley YMCA recognizes annually a member of the community for their exceptional altruism toward veterans and modeling of the YMCA values of caring, honesty, responsibility and respect. K.C. Bertling, Founder, Legacy 4 Korean War Veterans Foundation, was honored with the 2019 BG Bob Drolet Service to Veterans Award. The award, named in honor of retired Army Brig. Gen. Bob Drolet, was presented by Jeff Gronberg, Heart of the Valley YMCA Chief Volunteer Officer, Jerry Courtney, President and Beverly Lowe, 2018 recipient.
Heart of the Valley YMCA gave more than $129,000 in membership and program scholarships to service members and their families in 2018. The 15th YMCA Veterans Prayer Breakfast will be on Nov. 6, 2020. For more information, visit www.ymcahuntsville.org/VETERANS.