Every Tuesday, 15 to 20 pizzas make their way to USO Fort Hood.

The cost to soldiers: Nothing.

It’s all part of the local USO’s lunch program, which provides free lunches to soldiers every weekday (until the food runs out).

Officials estimate the Domino’s restaurants in the Fort Hood area have donated more than 18,000 pizza slices to the program over the years.

“We used to do it one Friday a month,” said Chris Herd, Domino’s district manager in Killeen. “And then in 2012, began doing it on a weekly basis.”

Herd got hooked on supporting troops back in 2004, when he attended an “emotional” homecoming event. At that event, another Domino’s official, Ingrid Kiefer, took 40 free pizzas for the returning soldiers and their families.

It was the start of a special relationship between the pizza parlor and soldiers.

“I think everybody should do something to support (soldiers),” he said. “And let these guys know that we stand behind them.”

Even though Herd has never been in the military, he understands that being in the Army is “more than a job.”

The Domino’s in Copperas Cove also hosts a soldier appreciation day every year, inviting soldiers and their families to a tour of the business and the opportunity to make their own free pizzas.

Support the troops

Robin Crouse, director of USO Fort Hood, said there are several restaurants that donate meals to the USO, feeding hungry soldiers.

“Not everybody can go home for lunch,” she said. “Not everybody has money to eat out.”

Domino’s regularly answers the call when the USO needs help to support soldiers, Crouse said.

“Domino’s is the epitome of that support,” she said, adding the USO becomes a packed house on pizza day.

All that said, the local USO could use more support, Crouse said, adding there a couple of spots that other restaurants wishing to donate food could fill.

For more information on donating food or volunteering for the USO, call Crouse at 254-768-2770.

Contact Jacob Brooks at​ jbrooks@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7468

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