By Mark Abrams
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Troops serving in Afghanistan will be enjoying a traditional Thanksgiving meal next Thursday thanks to the efforts of a Philadelphia-based defense supply group.
The Defense Logistics Agency, based in Northeast Philadelphia, makes all the arrangements to get a Thanksgiving feast into Afghanistan in time for the troops to enjoy a taste of home on the holiday.
Anthony Amendolia, who’s in charge of the effort and has earned the monicker “Mr. Thanksgiving,” says the task started months ago with purchase of all the supplies.
“We make sure we have 2,500 turkeys — that’s over 70,000 pounds,” he tells KYW Newsradio. “We have tons of cranberry sauce, 20,000 pies and, of course, 29,000 pounds of sweet potatoes.”
Amendolia says everything is shipped overseas frozen so it can be in the hands of the military kitchens by now, ready to be cooked and served for the holiday.
He says dozens of people here, in Europe, and in the Middle East are in the supply chain and play a role in fulfilling the mission.
But Amendolia says the best thank-you comes in the days following the feast.
“Afterwards, we do get our pictures and thank-yous from our service men and women who have just enjoyed their delicious meal,” he says.