Over 400 Marines stationed at the Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center got the opportunity to connect with more than 175 Coachella Valley families for a day of Thanksgiving celebrations as part of "Adopt-a-Marine."
The Marines traveled from Twentynine Palms via a chartered bus, and when arrived at the valley, they were greeted with a "Heroes Welcome." The Marines enjoyed a day of fun activities with the host families.
The Reserve Club in Indian Wells was one of the nine host clubs for "Adopt-a-Marine." 40 Marines went over to the Reserve Club and enjoyed barbecue lunch, golf putting tournament, and Thanksgiving Dinner.
"Hosting our local Marines for the holidays is a great way to support our troops in a meaningful way," said Walt VanBenthuysen, Co-Founder and Event Organizer for American Friends of Our Armed Forces. "We are committed to working together to create a club and community experience that honors service members and provides Thanksgiving hospitality they will never forget."
Many of the Marines expressed their gratitude, saying this was the best thing to happen to them in a while.
This was the 5th year the Reserve Clun has hosted Adopt-a-Marine."
Other participating clubs included the Toscana Country Club, Desert Horizons Country Club, Hideaway Golf Club, Indian Palms County Club & Resort, Palm Valley Country Club, Rancho La Quinta Country Club, Sun City Palm Desert, The Lakes Country Club, and Trilogy at The Polo Club.
If you would like to learn more about the event or donate to the AFAF, the organization that puts together "Adopt-a-Marine," click here.