MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS -- The party began with dinner and ended with a holiday raffle. Throughout the night there were a variety of activities including multiple giveaways including bikes and Christmas trees. The night also included a visit from Santa Claus and a prize giveaway toward the end of the night. The event was sponsored by Bob Hope United Service Organization, Palm Springs.
“This event in particular is important because it lets the caretaker, which is the staff of the hospital, know that they are appreciated for what they do,” said Teresa Cherry, center manager, Bob Hope USO, Palm Springs, native of Montesano, Wash. “We are here to lift the spirits of service members and their families because every moment counts.”
Children lined up, with wonder in their eyes, to meet Santa and tell him their Christmas wishes. Parents took this as an opportunity to take priceless photos of their young ones with Santa.
“These kinds of events help to show our gratitude to the military members for all the sacrifices they have to endure,” said Brian J. Coyle, director, Charter Center Relations, USO, native of Virginia Beach, Va.
Service members and their loved ones hit the dance floor as live music played. Others enjoyed the night’s meal with their families.
“We’re so blessed to be able to have this and give back to the staff members and their families,” said HM1 Celeste Soza, directorate for clinical services leading petty officer, native of Chandler, Az. “They work really hard and the families sacrifice a lot. To be able to give back to them is exciting.”