HARLINGEN, Texas — Hundreds of soldiers will soon come back home to Texas from Korea.
Veterans at the VFW Post 2410 are collecting goods to make their isolation a little easier.
“Graduated out of Rio Hondo in ’97 and immediately join the marine corps,” said Narciso “Trey” Villela.
He’s the commander of VFW Post 2410 in Harlingen and it’s a homecoming he knows well.
“I been stationed everywhere from California to Japan, Georgia, North Carolina, Biloxi Mississippi” he said.
From 2003 to 2009 he spent time overseas.
“I know the experience and the hardships that the families have to go through,” he said.
Now he’s looking to help soldiers coming home.
“Initially, it was a six-month deployment and now because of COVID they got extended 10 months due to the COVID and because they’re going to be in quarantine for 14 days. They don’t have the opportunity to go out and purchase all these items,” he said.
The soldiers are from Fort Hood, Texas.
Veterans are collecting essentials including towels, sheet sets and pillows for when those 173 soldiers step on American soil. They’re also accepting toiletries and other essential items to make soldiers feel more comfortable.
“We don’t know exactly where they’re going to be staying, if they’re going to be staying in open squad bays or individual rooms or what not. We’re just trying to get everything that they need so they can be as comfortable as possible,” he said.
Villela said it’s a small gesture to help his brothers and sisters.
“That’s just one of the things you build with that unit, that bond that cohesion with these other service members you know your brothers and sisters in arms. You want to look out for them the same way they looked out for you in the battlefield and now that I’m not deployed but they are. You just want to give that little bit back to them and be able to help them out,” he said.
you can drop off money and goods to the VFW Post 2410.
Address: 2006 Whalen RD.
Harlingen, TX 78550
They’re collecting donations until June 10th.