The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Vietnam veterans' steak feed sizzles with support in Hurley


April 29, 2019

P.J. Glisson/Daily Globe

MANNING THE grill at a Saturday evening steak feed by local Vietnam veterans are, from left, Terry Seibel, Sam Filippo and Paul Henning. The guys expected to prepare up to 400 or more steaks at the fundraiser, for which proceeds will enable local scholarships, toys from Santa and other goodwill programs.


Hurley - The Iron County Memorial Building in Hurley was loaded with people Saturday as folks lined up to enjoy steaks made to order, as well as ongoing camaraderie.

For $25, the advance-reservation meal was part of the 29th annual fundraiser for the Vietnam Veterans of America Gogebic-Iron Range Chapter 529.

The event allows veterans to fund a popular December event in which local children receive a gift from Santa at the memorial building.

According to local VVA treasurer Arvid Sivula, veterans also fund scholarships for students graduating from Hurley, Mercer and Ironwood.

In addition, he said they also support other causes, such as someone in need due to terminal illness, etc.

"All the money ends up in the community one way or the other," said Sivula. "It helps that local folks want to support the Vietnam veterans."

Out in back, a large grill was in constant use as Paul Henning, Terry Seibel and self-described "rookie" Sam Filippo prepared steaks to order, from rare to well done.

The guys said they were prepared to make as many as 440 steaks, although Sivula said they try to limit the number to 400.

The event, which ran from 4 p.m. to midnight, also was expected to include a performance by Marty's Goldenaires, followed by the issuing of door and raffle prizes.

Sivula said past raffles have included items such as televisions. This year, he said they planned to raffle off a gun.

In the kitchen, Karol Sivula was working with assistants who included adolescents Kiira Pekuri and AnnaLena Holmes.

"I like being in charge of people," said Pekuri, playfully, as the girls helped to set up salad, potatoes, bread and dessert. Other beverages also were available.

Sivula said the local VVA now has 49 members, including veterans from Michigan and Wisconsin. Spouses and other family members also participate as non-voting associate members.

As many as eight members have passed on in recent years. "That hurts a small club like ours," said the treasurer, who assured new members are always welcome.

Any local Vietnam veterans who wish to join Chapter 529 may call 715-561-2892 or 715-561-3006 or 715-561-2271.


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