By: Tara Blue
This year marked the 10th annual “Welcome Home: A Community for Veterans” Thanksgiving Dinner prepared by former Skyline Café owner Brenda Ravenscraft and Glenda Smith. The event was held at the Southern Boone Middle School and was sponsored by Welcome Home, a non-profit organization in Columbia which assists veterans with housing and employment.

More than 100 people came from all over Missouri to attend the event, including Debbie Barr and her family. Barr (Columbia) brought her granddaughter Grace Britt (Columbia), her uncle Marvin Chapman (Paris), her aunt Barbara Chapman (Williamsburg), and her cousin Cyrus Blackwell (Jefferson City).

Barr says they all live in different cities but wanted to spend Thanksgiving together. Although this was their first year attending the event, her uncle Marvin has been Ravencraft’s customer for over 15 years and has made it a point to support her wherever she goes.

Debbie Barr and granddaughter Grace Britt traveled from Columbia

“Our family has dwindled over time, and we wanted to spend the day with each other. We are happy to support a family friend for such a great cause,” said Barr.

Ashland Mayor Dorise Slinker and Southern Boone Schools Board Member Chris Felmlee served guests

The event raised over $2300 in donations for Welcome Home. Ravenscraft says she is thankful for everyone who donated time and money to the event, with a special shout out to the Walk in Faith church, Connections Bank, Ashland Lions Club, several of her coworkers who donated turkeys, and Mrs. Justine Rogers’ sixth grade class who peeled 50 lbs. of potatoes.