Family Excited to Host Airmen for Operation Thanksgiving

There are hundreds of men and women who can't go home for Thanksgiving at Sheppard Air Force Base, but through a program called Operation Thanksgiving, they're able to experience new friends and good food. 

Decorations are in place at the Coon's home and now they're anxiously awaiting everyone's favorite part.

“We'll have prime rib, and potatoes, and green beans, and stuffing, and cranberries, salad, and dinner rolls, and just the regular spread,” said Sarah Coons.

“Cherry, pumpkin, we will have several pies on display this year,” said Bryan Coons.

Because this year, the Coons will invite complete strangers to their Thanksgiving table.

They say it's the least they can do for those who serve.

“What they are doing for our country and for our community is just very admirable and very honorable, and we hope to give them a little piece of home away from their home during the holiday season and share that spirit with them,” said Bryan.

This will be the family's second year hosting airmen through the Sheppard Air Force Base program Operation Thanksgiving.

In 2010 the Coons welcomed Greg and Israel, both airmen, into their home, which they say was the beginning of two new friendships.

“We were able to have them over several other times after that thanksgiving meal and been able to establish a great relationship with them,” he said.

And the Coons hope this Thanksgiving celebration will help them build even more lasting relationships. 

“And make their day special, since they have to be away from their families, they deserve to have that special holiday feeling and so we can provide that for them,” said Sarah.

Providing the students with a hearty meal, while thanking them for the service they're dedicating to our country.

If you are a resident of Wichita Falls, Burkburnett, or Iowa Park and want to help make the 37th year of Operation Thanksgiving a success, you can.

Call the chapel at Sheppard Air Force Base at 940-676-0014 to become a host family.  

The deadline to sign up is Wednesday, November 20th.

Last year, Sheppard officials say 250 families hosted somewhere around 600 airmen for Thanksgiving.

They hope even more will have a home for the holiday this year.

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