In fact, the volunteers collecting and distributing food to local Coast Guard personnel say they’ve got more than enough to last at least two weeks.
“The outpouring of support has been outrageous,” said Dave Karpin, who represents the local Chief Petty Officers Association. The CPOA is organizing food drives and other fundraisers to help local Coast Guard personnel who aren’t receiving paychecks during the shutdown.
Karpin asked that people stop donating food for the time being; however, he’s still collecting donations of cash and gift cards, which help local Coasties with other needs.
“That helps with the perishable stuff, rent, gas bills, car payments,” he explained. “But, we’re good on food for now. If this (shutdown) continues, we’ll put the word out if the need arises.”
Karpin, who is retired from the Coast Guard, said the community support has not been lost on the local service men and women. He said they are extremely grateful for the help.
“The people you’re taking care of aren’t the admirals,” Karpin said. “They’re the younger kids, the guys you see standing in formation during Coast Guard Festival events, the ones who are out setting up chairs and driving the admirals around. They’re the ones who need help.”
Anyone who would like to donate can do so at the Grand Haven Tribune office, 101 N. Third St. Checks should be made out to the CPOA.