Everyone has heard of the USO, but hopefully you know it more than that group who sent Bob Hope over to entertain the troops in WW2/ Korea/ Vietnam/ Desert Storm (yes Bob went to all those conflicts)! The United Service Organization was borne out of the various Army and Navy organizations at the start of WW 2 and meant to support our troops wherever they went with a little hospitality and cheer.
Today it is a vibrant organization that arguably is the one who touches more lives of today’s military members than any others. Specifically,it is a real boon to the military traveler. They provide the equivalent of an airline lounge to everyone with a military ID. If you have never visited one, let me tell you a little about what you are missing. Unlike airline lounges, the USO is typically outside of security. They often have signs in the airport pointing the way to the USO, but sometimes it can be real challenging to find them – try SFO for example where you have to take an elevator and then travel down a remote hallway to find their very nice space.
Here is a list of the services they provide depending on the location:
You can look up specific information at http://www.uso.org/Centers/Locate-A-Center.aspx. Thye have locations throughout the U.S. and indeed the entire world including Germany, the Middle East, Guam and everywhere else that our military serves.
I contribute to the USO every year, but right now you can get a special deal for doing so from American Airlines. American Airlines is the official airline of the USO and regularly donates miles for the USO to support the troops around the world. If you contribute this week 7-11 Nov, they will give you 15 AA miles for every dollar you contribute. There is a limit of 60,000 miles, so if you were going to donate more than $ 4,000, I guess you will just have to satisfy yourself with the knowledge of doing a great thing for a bunch of soldiers,
sailors, airmen, and Marines rather than just getting a bunch of miles. Go here to see the full page from American Airlines and all of the great stuff they do for the USO. Please contribute and remember that your donation is tax deductible so make this work for you and our troops out there!
While here check out all of the great programs AA does for this country’s
veterans and the USO. Happy Veterans’ Day to everyone and thier families!