Local Man Doing His Part to Serve Those Who've Served

Reported by: Logan McDougall
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Updated: 1/25/2013 8:21 pm
Earlier this week many across this nation took to the streets to volunteer their time to honor the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a National Day of Service.

In east Idaho, one man is serving day in and day out those who have given so much for this country to allow us to enjoy such a day by driving veterans to their appointments at the VA hospital in Salt Lake City.

"When I became a bona fide retired guy - it's important for retired people to stay busy and structure things," said Joe Frederickson “and I'm a vet myself, I was aware of this service and I thought 'that sounds like a good idea' and I signed up, passed the examinations and here I am today behind the wheel."

"My very first assignment, I hit a deer in Malad," continued Frederickson, "I had veterans, and crutches, and oxygen bottles flying every which way, what a show."

"I served in the U.S. Navy for four years, with two Vietnam tours," Frederickson said. "I didn't see hot combat, but I really do have a special affinity for veterans."

"What's your favorite part of helping these folks out who've served," asked KPVI Reporter Logan McDougall.

"The opportunity to visit with them," said Frederickson. "The most specific example I can give you was one morning I had - sitting in the very seat you're in right now - a Marine who was in the first wave of landings on Iwo Jima. Many veterans don't care to talk about their combat experience and I understand, but some do and he did. So, I was able to hear an oral history of preparation for the Iwo Jima landing and his combat experience. It was an oral history you probably couldn't get anywhere else."

"Every person has a skill set, there's always something within them and their life experiences that they can bring to a situation and make contributions," Frederickson said. "I would just ask that people think about that and whatever those skills are, and call the United Way, call a social service agency, step up and say 'is there some way I can help you.'"
If you would like to volunteer to help our nation's veterans you can contact Robert Hahn at 226-6392.

For more information on ways you can volunteer in the throughout the community you can visit seidahovolunteer.org
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