North Platte and the Canteen

by Don on May 11, 2009

in About North Platte

I am a member of the professional association National Conference for Catechetical Leadership – NCCL for short. Our Executive Director, Lee Negal, sends out a weekly newsletter. I was surprised to see the following entry in the May 11, 2009 issue of Lee’s newsletter.

cantinHere’s a tribute to all women Several years ago, I had the opportunity to
read a book by Bob Greene, entitled Once Upon a Town. Before reading this book, I did not know that during World War II, American soldiers from every city and walk of life rolled through North Platte, Nebraska, on troop trains en route to their ultimate destinations in Europe and the
Pacific. The tiny town, wanting to offer the servicemen warmth and support, transformed its modest railroad depot into the North Platte Canteen. Every day of the year, every day of the war, the Canteen–staffed and funded entirely by local volunteers–was open from five a.m. until the last troop train of the day pulled away after midnight. Astonishingly, this remote plains community of only 12,000 people provided welcoming words, friendship, and baskets of food and treats to more than six million GIs by the time the war ended. Now, there is a short video on YouTube that tells the story. Since most of the people who worked the canteen were women, many of them mothers, I thought it appropriate to share the video North Platte with you.

Thanks Lee!

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