MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- It's part of a national observance of the Department of Veteran Affairs called "National Salute for Veterans" -- and the Milwaukee VA Medical Center expanded its celebration to include all local veterans.
It is time to party and celebrate veterans!
As they entered the celebration hall, each vet got a homemade Valentine's card to set the stage, but there was so much more.
Music, food, games, giveaways including Harley Davidson gear -- and plenty of volunteers including 35 from Johnson Control buzzed around to make sure everyone was having a good time.
"Being able to help a veteran, being able to just bring a smile to a veteran's face when you say 'thank you for your service,' means a lot," said Cassie Woyak, Johnson Controls executive assistant.
Vets could do what they wanted, including swap war stories.
Neils Cocraft was on the infamous Pork Chop Hill in Korea where many American soldiers lost their lives. This salute to veterans and their sacrifice, he likes.
"I think it's a good idea because, not to be selfish about it, I think we earned it," said Cocraft.
All of this celebration is stark contrast to the news pouring out of the VA center in Tomah where an investigation is underway for alleged over-prescribing of opiates and negligent care -- a subject the Milwaukee facility hesitates to touch.
"I think the VA overall offers phenomenal care and there are some stories that are out there, I think, I can't speak to that. I can speak to the care and the services we provide here at the Milwaukee VA. People are overwhelmingly happy with the care they receive here," said Gary Kunich, VA Medical Center spokesmen.
The National Salute to Veterans is held every year at this time -- during the week of Valentine's Day, which is appropriate since it's designed to show love and appreciation.