TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The Salvation Army held its 31st annual Thanksgiving dinner Thursday, serving nearly 2,000 meals.
Volunteers started working at 5a.m. preparing to serve Tucsonans in need.
In the morning, volunteers delivered more than 500 meals to people who cannot leave their home. Then, they served about 1,200 more to a packed house at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church.
"Great turnout, great turnout," said Jon Wirtis, who works as the chef full time at Caridad Community Kitchen, but was volunteering for the first time at the Salvation Army's dinner.
Wirtis helped make the traditional meal of turkey and all the trimmings, including mashed potatoes, stuffing, vegetables and cranberry sauce.
However, the Thanksgiving meal is about much more than just the food. It gives people, who may have nowhere to go for the holiday, a place to be with people and feel loved.
A lot of them are maybe homeless, a lot of them are the working poor, a lot of them just have challenges just going on in life right now and they need to come out and share," said Wirtis. "We can bring those people together. They don't have to feel alone...They've got a new family now."