Toby Keith is an American singer-songwriter and entertainer with multiple No. 1 albums and even more Top Ten hits! He has fans young and old and near and far, but some of his biggest are here at the USO!
Since his first tour, Toby Keith has traveled to more than 17 countries, including Korea, Germany and the Persian Gulf and has lifted the spirits of more than 140,000 service men and women, many at small remote outposts. “I’ve been traveling with the USO since 2002, and every year I look forward to spending time with the men and women who serve this great country. When I get on stage and look out into a crowd of uniforms, it gives me a great sense of pride to know that I am giving back to them,” Toby has said.
Not only has he gone on eight USO tours, but he actually has some pretty good ideas at times! While visiting troops in Afghanistan, Keith recognized the need to deliver the day-to-day comforts of home to service members stationed far away from main bases and USO Centers. His idea became known as the “USO2GO” program, which sends much-needed electronics, entertainment, comfort food and more to those stationed in remote locations. While he has a non-stop schedule, I got a chance to ask him a few questions:
What made you want to begin touring for the USO? After my father died, I wanted to do something in honor of him being a veteran. I went one time and it became a labor of love - I’ve been going every [year] since. It’s going on a decade now… two weeks at a time. What’s your fondest memory while on a USO tour? I have so many great memories, it would be hard to single one out. They’re all great! If you could say one thing to all the men and women serving our country right now, what would it be? Thank you for your wonderful service. You folks continue to guarantee my family and loved ones all of our freedom and security. Carry on… Godspeed.
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Oct 18, 2016
Making the Terminal Come Alive: USO’s Unique Approach at Sigonella Gives Deploying Service Members a Much-Needed Escape
With little space for a traditional center – and weary military travelers often spreading throughout the terminal for hours while waiting for training flights or deployments – the USO spread its services throughout the terminal at NAS Sigonella.