By Reg Chapman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s the time of year for giving, and a recent gift to help veterans has even more meaning because it comes from another vet organization.

The Minneapolis Uptown VFW Post 246 has gone through two years of uncertainty. First the pandemic, then the unrest in the neighborhood following the death of George Floyd.

Now it’s back doing what they’re good at — helping vets.

The post recently gave a $25,000 check to a veterans group known as Every Third Saturday.

“On behalf of the VFW Post 246, I’d like to present this check,” said Post Cmdr. Gabriel Thomas.

It was a moment of giving from one veteran organization to another. There were smiles all around for the occasion, but everyone remembers the rough road traveled to get to this point.

“This post has been around for 100 years, the last two have been tough,” Thomas said.

Members of VFW Post 246 can tell stories of how it survived during the uprising after George Floyd was killed and the countless days of protest and vandalism that plagued this area of Uptown.

Thomas says members and guest are counting their blessings that this building is still standing.

“It’s just great to get back on our feet,” Thomas said.

It was a rough go for the post. COVID-19 kept people at home.

Business was slow due to the shutdown, and no money was coming in to help the veterans and families the VFW prides itself in helping.

Post quartermaster Winston Kettle made cuts and accepted help where the post could get it.

“Really working on our efficiency and taking advantage of things like the Payroll Protection Plan, being able to work with the county to reduce our property taxes and getting our business being a bar and a restaurant back up and running,” Kettle said.

After being back on track for several months, the post is now able to do what it’s done for 100 years: support Veterans.

“We really like being able to support the community at large and another organization here in the city that supports veterans,” Kettle said.

For Every Third Saturday, this much needed gift will go a long way.

“It means we are all working together so that the veteran on the street or the veteran in need gets what they need,” said Tom McKenna, a veterans advocate with the group.

The restaurant and bar at the Uptown VFW has a new kitchen and menu, which just opened Wednesday.

Every time you eat or drink there you become part of the team helping to provide resources to veterans in need.

Reg Chapman