‘The way we used to unite’: Free meals let veterans reminisce, reunite

Local News

BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) — One of the fun perks of Veterans Day is free food that restaurants give to vets. Restaurants like Buffalo Wild Wings said it’s a great way to give back to service members.

“I went to six restaurants — IHOP, Applebees, Texas Roadhouse, Chili’s, Primanti Brothers. That’s all I can remember. It’s been fun and exciting,” said Marine veteran Raymond Fletcher.

Veterans shared their tours of duty.

“I spent a lot of time overseas. A couple tours in Japan, been to Korea, been to Italy, Spain, Germany… And I spent a whole lot of time in South America,” Fletcher said.

“I spent 22 years in the Air Force, probably the best 22 years of my life,” said Air Force veteran Michael Livoski.

“I was in the Army in military intelligence and I was stationed in Korea,” said Army veteran Jon Tallman.

Tallman comes from a long line of proud veterans.

“My great grandfather, his brother and 11 first cousins all fought for the union in the Civil War,” Tallman said.

The food isn’t the only thing bringing people to the table.

“It’s not so much about coming out to get the food and tipping someone. It’s about the comradeship — the way we felt, the way we used to unite,” Fletcher said.

For those vets who have served who can no longer spend time with loved ones… a special tribute greeted guests as they entered the lobby.

“When you walk in the door and they have the table there with the open seat. That’s really respectful. I appreciate that,” Livoski said.

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