Register | Forgot Your Password? | Close
veterans_dinner.jpg
Veterans and active duty military members served dinner to around 90 homeless veterans at the Phoenix Rescue Mission on Monday night. (KTAR Photo/Michael Mashburn)

PHOENIX -- Crystal Reidy knows all too well what it's like going to bed hungry. She grew up in and out of homelessness before joining the National Guard in her senior year of high school.

Through her military service, Reidy received her bachelor's and master's degrees and is currently working on her doctorate.

That success is the reason she organized the "Veterans Serving Veterans" dinner at the Phoenix Rescue Mission.

"It's really my way of paying back the veterans who helped me break that homeless cycle," said Reidy.

Each Veterans Day, Reidy works with active duty military members from the 123rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment with the Arizona National Guard. Together, they cook and serve meals to about 90 homeless veterans.

The veterans all received a patriotic ribbon as they entered the dining area Monday. The event was all about remembering and serving those who served before her, said Reidy.

"We have a saying: 'You never leave a man behind,'" she said. "This is us making sure that when we're off the battlefield, we're still not leaving that man behind."

Veterans account for 13 percent of the adult homeless population in the state, according to the Department of Economic Security. Nearly 1 in 5 returning soldiers has experienced serious trauma, leaving them with lifelong trauma that often leads to homelessness.

share this story:
Attention KTAR.com Comment Users: We have recently changed our comments boards.
We would like you to be part of the conversation and The Voice of Arizona by logging in with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing KTAR (Arizona Sports) account members will need to create a Disqus account or use one of the aforementioned social media logins. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus

World Class Arizona

  • Dignity Health

    World Class People. World Class Company. Excellent care, delivered with compassion, for all in need.

Voice For A Better Arizona

  • Family in Focus

    KTAR spends the week taking a look at the issues a modern Arizona family faces.