Bill Mulligan, a proud member of Bill McIntyre’s Shooting Stars Fancy Brigade, has put a new spin on the meaning of Thanksgiving.
While others began preparing their annual turkey dinner with all the trimmings, Mulligan and his fellow Mummers spent the first three weeks of November collecting household items, bathroom and kitchen supplies, nonperishable items, clothing, and much more to give to the Philadelphia Veterans House, to help homeless veterans others in need who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Mulligan began this initiative three years ago with a handful of groups. Since then, the operation has grown – in fact, this year 38 Mummers groups participated in the drive!
“This is our way of saying ‘Thanks’ to those who have served our country and who helped protect our freedom,” said Mulligan. “A lot of guys come back from serving overseas and face problems trying to readapt to civilian society. The Philadelphia Veterans House does a great job to reach out to them and help them get the social, medical and other support services they need.”
Mulligan says all the Mummers organizations began collecting donated items on November 1st. The campaign will ran through November 19th, when all the donations were brought to a central location at the Bill McIntyre’s Shooting Stars Club House at 1931 South 3rd St.
On Saturday morning, November 19th, the at 8:00 a.m., Mummers from the various divisions and brigades gathered at the Shooting Stars Club House to load all the supplies onto a truck and deliver them to the Philadelphia Veterans House at 4108 Baltimore Ave. in West Philadelphia.
The scene was captured by several local TV stations, as well as KYW Newsradio
In addition, Mulligan and his team arranged with a local restaurant, Tollman Joe’s, to provide a holiday feast at the Comfort House to 150 veterans who would have nowhere else to go on the night before Thanksgiving,
“It’s a terrific effort on the part of all the Mummers organizations and the local sponsors and a great way to honor veterans in need,” said Mulligan.