The Killeen Food Care Center gave out 1,000 Thanksgiving baskets to the military community Monday morning.

Raymond Cockrell, executive director of the Food Care Center, said he was happy to help military families during the holiday season.

“No one should ever go hungry, most specially our military families,” he said. “We have so many transient families coming through, and we just want to make sure their holidays are special.”

The effort was organized in coordination with the Fort Hood Chaplain’s office and the Command Finance Specialist.

“The command financial specialists come here and pick up the turkeys for each brigade,” Cockrell said. “They are taking them back out on to Fort Hood and then distribute them directly to the troops.”

Families are provided with a 10- to 12-pound turkey, a bag of canned goods as well as dessert.

Local organizations like the Boy Scout Troop 287 and the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Endeavors helped with donations and organizing the large amount of Thanksgiving baskets.

“This is our 31st year and, as far as I know, we have always handed out Thanksgiving baskets,” Cockrell said.

Besides giving donations, many residents wanted to support their community by volunteering.

Casey Fogle is a life skills and outreach coordinator at Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Endeavors in Killeen. Volunteering at a food bank is especially important to her.

“My husband and I have had times when we were trying to figure out what we would have on the dinner table as our kids were really little,” she said. “This gives me a chance to make sure other families don’t have that worry.”

Fogle reminded families in need to not lose hope and to ask for support.

“It doesn’t last forever,” she said. “Just accept the help that is given and then pay it forward when you have a chance.”

The Food Care Center also provides the civilian community with groceries for the holidays. Six hundred Thanksgiving baskets will be handed out to the local community this morning. Families interested in the service need to qualify through the Bell County Help Center.

The Food Care Center is at 210 N. 16th St. in Killeen.

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