Chosen 300 Ministries celebrates homeless veterans on Memorial Day

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Chosen 300 Ministries held their annual Memorial Day celebration, but Monday's festivities near 11th and Spring Garden streets were a little different this year.

There were markers reminding those lining up to stand 6 feet apart and to-go plates to limit contact between volunteers and those most vulnerable, including homeless veterans this holiday.

Living out of plastic bags, veteran Pete Markopulos said this a chance to get a hot meal and be honored for his service, even if only for an hour.

A fifth of the city's homeless population are veterans. Organizers say they've seen more people in line at their food giveaways since the lockdown.

"For these folks, when COVID-19 hit, it was devastating to their lives because a lot of the services they were often available to them were shutdown," said Brian Jenkins, Executive Director of Chosen 300 Ministries.

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