NORTHBROOK, Ill. — “When the weather turns cold, Libertyville Rotary Sunrise and Zengeler Cleaners team up to collect coats, gloves, scarves and other winter clothing in support of the nation’s veterans,” the cleaners says.
“We’re happy to announce that the 2019 Coats for Vets drive was once again a huge success,” Zengeler notes, “with 2,378 coats and jackets, along with hundreds of other articles of clothing, donated this year.
“The items were delivered to the North Chicago, Ill., VA hospital in conjunction with Veterans’ Day, a day set aside each year so a grateful nation can recognize and honor our veterans,” it relates.
“Veterans returning from active duty face a myriad of serious challenges as they readjust to civilian life,” notes Tom Zengeler, president of Zengeler Cleaners. “Perhaps none more daunting than trying to return to the workforce. Too often, jobs held before leaving to serve our country are no longer available, making it very challenging to find meaningful work.”
That’s why Libertyville Rotary Sunrise, Zengeler Cleaners, their customers and other concerned citizens contribute to Coats for Vets to, as he puts it, “Show our gratitude for the sacrifices veterans have made on our behalf. It’s a meaningful way to thank our vets for providing the freedom we enjoy.”
The response to the annual collection drive was tremendous, Zengeler relates, “Resulting in thousands of coats, jackets, gloves, scarves and other winter apparel. While the donations have a retail value exceeding $325,000, there’s no way to measure how much the donations mean to vets in need.
“With so many surviving veterans of conflicts from World War II through the present time, there are thousands needing assistance for basics such as food, shelter and clothing, particularly seasonal items, such as winter coats and jackets,” he says.
Zengeler Cleaners indicates that its two Libertyville stores once again served as drop-off locations for the donations. After the items were collected, Zengeler adds, its staff inspects, repairs as needed, and cleans every donated item. They also supported the effort and delivered the clothing in time for Veterans Day on November 11.
“Thankfully, support for Coats for Vets continues to be very strong,” says Zengeler. “People really care about our veterans.”