Veterans and civilians of San Angelo gather to celebrate connection with the community at the first Veterans Ball

“Here at San Angelo, we are the heart of the veteran community. We are proud of it.”

SAN ANGELO, Texas. Texas has the largest number of veterans in the nation, with over a million veterans. And with 15 active military installations across the state serving as a “test run” of sorts for the life of the Lone Star, many of those military personnel who have never been here before decide to return as soon as their service is over.

DAV 237 Commander Luis Martinez said one of the main reasons for this is the care available in the VA like San Angelo and the many veteran programs and support groups available such as the Tom Green County All Veterans Council, Women Veterans . Society and VFW, among many others.

“The great thing about San Angelo is that we grow as veterans,” Martinez said. “We are growing fast. Because veterans see that they get the help they need when they come here.”

Because San Angelo is located right between El Paso (which has been dubbed the “Veterans Capital of the United States”) and San Antonio Lackland Air Force Base, through which more than 35,000 recruits pass each year, Martinez said San Angelo is in the best location. really make an impact on improving the lives of veterinarians.

“Here at San Angelo, we are the heart of the veteran community. We are proud of it.”

Another reason, he says, is a sense of community—not just with other veterans, but with Texans who welcome their return to civilian life.

“These are not only veterans, but also civilians. That’s why I love this community because everyone says “I’ll help”. I’ll take care of this man.”

This sense of community and brother-sister bond is one of the things that inspired the first Veterans Awards Ball. Martinez said it was an opportunity to have some fun as well as say “thank you” to veteran support networks throughout the Concho Valley.

“This is our first veteran ball. We never had that in San Angelo. When you’re in the military, you’re used to doing all of this… Something just to know the history of this service and all that,” Martinez said. “So we wanted to do something about it here in San Angelo. Because we have a rich, rich veteran history in San Angelo, and we want to celebrate it. So not only will we be throwing a ball, but we’re also giving thanks to agencies and individuals for the work they’ve done for veterans in the community.”

Much of this will be a continuation of honoring the female veterans who inspired the ball’s name.

“This ball is in line with the theme of our parade – honoring women veterans. So we’ll call it Combat Boots and a Pearl Ball. And we’re still going to honor women veterans because they make a lot of sacrifices too.”

The ball is scheduled to begin on Saturday, March 25 at 6:00 pm at the Fort Concho Trade Warehouse. Contact San Angelo Veterans for more information.

“Everything,” Martinez said. “The whole society is invited. This is going to break the norm of typical military balls because this is an opportunity for us to start our own traditions… With Goodfellow and the veterans community, it’s an amazing partnership, and then when you put the civilians of San Angelo on top of that, we’re an unstoppable engine. And the whole state is beginning to recognize it. That’s why everyone goes to San Angelo for help. Whether you’re in the military, veteran, or civilian, we’re all working together towards the same goal of looking after each other.”

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