U.S. troops across the globe will receive Thanksgiving meal despite supply chain barriers

The Defense Logistics Agency’s troop support team will begin work on coordinating the annual Thanksgiving meal for the troops in March, the Department of Defense said in a statement. This year, the team faced the same global supply chain problems that the rest of the world has to deal with due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but still managed to get important Thanksgiving foods to bases around the world.

“We have been working with our suppliers well in advance of the holiday to reduce the chances that the necessary items will not be available on the big day,” said Robin Whaley, DLA Troop Support’s Subsistence Manager Customer Service for the Continental United States, in a statement.

Because of their hard work and planning, an estimated 5,706 whole turkeys, 59,666 pounds of roasted turkeys, 38,400 pounds of sweet potatoes, 68,465 pounds of pies and cakes and 23,461 gallons of eggnog were delivered to bases around the world, including Qatar, the Philippines, Guam and Singapore.

“Thanksgiving is one of the most important meals we work on throughout the year,” said Colonel Larry Dean, director of the subsistence supply chain at DLA Troop Support, in a statement. “As a proud member of the Army who has enjoyed these meals when I could not be home with my family. It means so much to have that taste of home on Thanksgiving when one can not be there.”

Secretary of Defense Llloyd Austin sent a message to the troops the day before Thanksgiving, thanking them for their service prior to the holiday.

“This week, as Americans gather with family and friends, they will thank you for the many blessings we enjoy as a country. And I know they count all of you and your families among those blessings,” Austin said in the statement.

Earlier this week, Austin repeated the same message while meeting with U.S. military members based at Al Dhafra Air Base in the United Arab Emirates while traveling to the Middle East.

“I just wanted to come by and say thank you,” Austin said Monday as he met with U.S. military service members at the base before returning to the United States. “I want you, on behalf of Lloyd Austin, to tell your families that we are grateful for your victims.”

Austin said he knew this was not the first vacation these service members have missed.

“We are approaching the holiday season like this, and my guess is that some of you have missed a number of holidays since you were in the military, and you should know that we are grateful for your victims. Your families need to know that we are grateful for their victims, “Austin said.

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