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Athletes and families of athletes help themselves to refreshments from the USO Mobile Canteen. The Mobile USO lounge is also equipped with books, magazines and a 46-inch LCD television with state-of-the-art home theater. (USO photo by Joseph Andrew Lee)
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Colorado USO Volunteers Support Warrior Games

Thursday, May 03, 2012

By Joseph Andrew Lee 

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- They say good help is hard to find, but that’s not a problem at the 2012 Warrior Games.

To support the Games, the Fort Carson USO is teaming up with the Mobile USO canteen to distribute much-needed snacks and beverages to athletes and their families at each event location throughout the week.

“At 6 a.m., it’s a godsend to see that USO rig pull up,” said Sgt. Calvin Brumont, Motor Transport Operator with the 360th Transportation Company at Fort Carson, Colo. “When you see the USO logo, you know you’re gonna at least find some coffee inside, maybe some other goodies too,” he said.  “We all gravitate toward that bus as soon as we see it pull up.”

A Mobile USO looks like a cross between an oversized RV and a truck.  It’s essentially a compact USO center on wheels, offering many of the same amenities as the brick and mortar facilities. The Mobiles serve troops working in remote locations that don’t have a USO center, and they support special events and outings across the U.S. 

Having the Mobile USO on site may be a “godsend” for hungry troops, but the rig would be just a hunk of sheet metal without people to support it.

Volunteers like Dick and Irene Sarr are the real engine behind the Mobile USO. The Sarrs, both 74, handed out water and concessions to athletes and families at an archery event this week.  The couple has been volunteering together at the Fort Carson USO for nearly four years, and Irene says they plan to continue, “Just as long as the good lord will let them.”

“We feel blessed to be able to help out,” she said after her volunteer shift was over. “We both felt so good when we left.”

“We always do,” she added, “But today it was something different. It was even more special to help out our wounded heroes. The troops kept on thanking us, but we kept saying over and over, ‘You don’t need to thank us.  We are the ones that are here to say thank you.’”

To become a USO volunteer, call your local USO center or visit www.uso.org/ways-to-volunteer.aspx.

* View images from the 2012 Warrior Games on our Warrior Games Flickr set.

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Photo caption: Athletes and families of athletes help themselves to refreshments from the USO Mobile Canteen. The Mobile USO lounge is also equipped with books, magazines and a 46-inch LCD television with state-of-the-art home theater. (USO photo by Joseph Andrew Lee) 

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