The Colfax County Senior Citizens Center put a spin on its regular Monday night dinner, hosting 130 veterans and their families this week for a special veterans recognition event.

Senior center manager Tom Healy led the crowd in prayer and thanked the group for their service to the country before Virginia Semerad, Maria Semerad and Jerry Reinsch performed patriotic music.

Keynote speaker Jim Jakub, commander of the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Pawnee Chapter 20, shared information about that group and its mission of helping veterans access the benefits they've earned.

“Our DAV office in Columbus is full of a highly trained team of veterans who are here to serve other veterans,” Jakub said. “I’m speaking to you all today to lend my hand out to you if you have a time of need.”

Jakub and other trained DAV officers travel throughout Nebraska to offer anything they can to better the lives of disabled veterans and their families.

“Since our office has been at its current location, we have had 160 veterans who have come to us for help,” Jakub said. “Some vets don’t think they will be able to be helped by us because maybe they aren’t part of the VFW or any other organization, but our rule is that if you took that oath to protect your country and the Constitution, then you are a veteran and are among those we serve.”

Jakub, a U.S. Army veteran, went on to explain just what the DAV does.

“Families of veterans have come to us for help with transportation, whether they need a new vehicle, or housing issues,” he said. “We also want to emphasize that female veterans are helped just as much as the men are. They are all taken care of no matter the reason.”

He encouraged disabled veterans and their family members not to hesitate to contact the DAV office for assistance.

“We all want to thank our veterans in any way that we can,” Jakub said. “This is exactly what we at the DAV do and why we do it. It’s all up to them to get involved with us, and it’s such a great honor to be able to do so.”

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