WEST BERLIN, NJ - This coming Armed Forces Day, which is Saturday May 19th, over 40 veterans will be specifically honored at their hometown grocery stores. The owners of the seven Zallie’s owned Shoprite locations in Gloucester and Camden county are doing their part to honor the vets.
David Schimpf and Carl Letizia were two of the veterans honored last year at the Shoprite in West Berlin.
Schimpf served in the Vietnam War from 1966 to 1968 and says his welcome home from war wasn’t like the welcome home veterans receive today; so it was incredible to be honored at last year’s luncheon. “They make you feel very comfortable and very honored to be a veteran,” said Schimpf.
Zallie Supermarkets Inc. owns and operates seven different Shoprite stores, and this is their seventh year hosting the luncheon for the veterans and their families. Each of the honorees is presented with a $200 bank gift card, a patriotic floral arrangement, and several other gifts from the grocery store. “These veteran shop at our stores on a daily basis and we thought, ‘Why not bring them in?’ Let’s serve them some lunch, get to know them a little bit better, bring their family, bring their friends, and it just became a wonderful tradition. We are just going to keep moving forward with it.”
Starting Saturday, May 19, and then every Monday thereafter, they will be offering a 5% discount to both active and retired military members.
Carl Letizia served in the Navy and the Marine Corp. during the Korean War and says he’s not sure how or why he was chosen to be honored last year, but he was certainly grateful. “Out of thousands of veterans, I got chosen! I don’t know why, but it’s an honor to be here!” said Letizia.