Holt and Skinner families

Members of the Holt and Skinner families take sides (Holts on the left; Skinners on the right) to enjoy a free meal during last year's veterans' Thanksgiving at the Brandin' Iron. 

Saving Forgotten Warriors and the Brandin’ Iron Steakhouse are teaming up to offer free Thanksgiving meals to veterans and their families or caretakers on Monday. 

The traditional meals of turkey, ham, dressing and other sides will be available from the Brandin’ Iron’s West Point location from noon to 6 p.m., said Brandin’ Iron manager and Saving Forgotten Warriors board member Josh Speakman. 

Socially-distanced dining in will still be an option for veterans who wish to come to the restaurant to share stories or see some of their friends like they do every other year, but there will be a drive-thru window and take-out options for those who would rather eat their meal at home, he said. 

Speakman said the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office also delivers meals to homebound veterans each year, and any veterans who would like their meals delivered can give the restaurant a call at 256-739-1112, and leave their name, address and phone number before Monday.

“We don’t want to leave anybody out just because they’re homebound,” he said. “We’ll be happy to call them when we’re on the way to their house and take care of them, no problem.”

Speakman said this is the fifth year that SFW and the Brandin’ Iron have offered the free meals, and last year saw around 1,000 meals served to the area’s veterans.

“It’s just our way of giving back to our veterans,” he said. “They sacrifice so much, the least we can do is feed them once a year for Thanksgiving.”

He said the event has continued to grow each year and local businesses and organizations begin reaching out to him in August to make sure they get on the list to sponsor some of the meals for those who served, and there are plenty of volunteers who sign up to help out on the day of the event. 

“It’s a huge event,” he said. “It’s amazing how much people want to get behind it.”

Tyler Hanes can be reached at 256-734-2131 ext. 238.

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