Editor: I am a member of the Wi Cha Ka #222 Degree of Pocahontas chapter in Oakley. We recently received a generous donation from Julie Leyva, a resident of Brentwood, after I posted a request for Christmas cards for Veterans at the Veteran Martinez Memorial Hospital where we drop off gifts, cards and useful items. Mrs. Leyva handmade and donated $2,000 dollars worth of beautiful blankets, hats and scarves. It took her three months to crochet them while she was visiting her father, who is on hospice in Utah.
Our lodge does fundraisers for the Martinez Vets hospital, and we did our annual visit (my first) on Dec. 19. It was so rewarding to go from room to room asking the veterans, males and females, what they would like or could use. The patients, short and long term, were very interested in what we were doing and shared their service experiences during and after their enlistment. The staff are wonderful at the VA hospital, with excellent doctor and nursing staff and great ancillary staff (environmental janitors and nutrition services.) I just want to thank all the Brentwood, Antioch and Oakley residents and the Wi Cha Ka #222 lodge (Irene Martinez, Patricia Urenda, Marilyn & Mike Olson, Alicia Martinez, Helen Knowles, Barbara Chavez, Mary Jane Crockett, Mary Ann and Hilary Hetrick, Julie and Mike Leyva (son who helped with the dropped off)) and our supportive spouses, family, friends and others. The value of your donations has been priceless, and whether small or large, they are greatly appreciated.