Beef Council Supports Steaks for Troops
PIERRE, SD—(May 19, 2011) Approximately 185 members of the South Dakota National Guard’s 200th Engineer Company and their families enjoyed a steak dinner May 14 before leaving for a one-year deployment in Afghanistan. The Steak for Troops dinner, held at the National Guard Armory in Pierre, was compliments of the All-American Beef Battalion. The South Dakota Beef Industry Council (SDBIC) was on hand to present $1,000 towards the event.
“The SDBIC Board wanted to support this event with checkoff dollars because these people sacrifice so much for us,” says SDBIC Executive Director Ron Frederick. “They’re giving up a lot. To be able to show our appreciation and give them a good steak meal is worth every penny.”
The All-American Beef Battalion (AABB) is the brainchild of Bill Broadie of Ashland, KS, a Vietnam War Veteran and cattleman. The non-profit, all-volunteer organization travels the country, providing a steak dinner with all the trimmings—including entertainment—for some of the country’s deploying troops and at their homecoming. The goal, says Brodie, is to support American troops and All-American beef.
“We’ve fed over 80,000 people in three years,” says the former Marine, who came to South Dakota with 400 18-20 oz. rib-eye steaks and 100 Certified Angus Beef quarter-pound hot dogs. When numbers at the South Dakota event swelled to around 800 people, Brodie said they started cutting the steaks in half and scrambling for additional food. “It was a great turnout of troops and family,” he insists.
Brodie says he is also impressed with the support from people in the Mount Rushmore State. “Talk about the generosity of South Dakotans supporting the troops,” he says. “We received close to $13,000 in financial assistance, including the $1,000 from the South Dakota Beef Industry Council. And many people in the Pierre area, including ranchers, came to help serve. I would have to rank this as one of our top events in terms of area support.”
Frederick says it was obvious the event was appreciated by the troops and their families. “It was a tear jerker,” he said. “There were mothers and fathers of troops who went up to Bill, giving him handshakes and hugs and telling him how much it was appreciated.”
To find out more about the All-American Beef Battalion, including how to donate to the program, go to www.steaksfortroops.com.
The SDBIC collects and administers the $1 Beef Checkoff on cattle sold in South Dakota. Checkoff dollars are utilized strictly for promotion, education or research programs. Fifty cents of every dollar is directed to the Cattlemen’s Beef Board for programs on the national level. The SDBIC retains 50 cents, which is invested in additional national programs or in-state programs.
The SDBIC is comprised of three representatives from eight agricultural organizations: SD Beef Breeds Council, SD Cattlemen’s Association, SD Cattlemen’s Auxiliary, SD CattleWomen, SD Farm Bureau, SD Farmers Union, SD Livestock Auction Market Association and SD Stockgrowers Association.