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Midwest Shelter for Homeless Veterans opens commissary

WHEATON – The Midwest Shelter for Homeless Veterans dedicated a new commissary Sept. 11 to provide at-risk veterans and their families with new and gently used goods.

The Army Capt. Kevin C. Landeck Freedom Commissary will offer necessities such as clothing, hygiene supplies and furniture at no charge, according to a news release from the shelter. It will also provide gift cards for other basic needs such as groceries and gasoline.

"We thought it was important to be able to expand our services to our veterans," said shelter President and Founder Bob Adams. "All items are donated to us and it is completely free for veterans."

The store, which has been operating since Memorial Day, is open Wednesdays, as well as Mondays and Fridays by appointment, Adams said. The shelter's administration waited until they received the blessing of the family of the commissary's namesake to hold a grand opening and ribbon cutting.

"Obviously we think that's a very sensitive issue, so we contacted the Landeck family and they came out to see the store to get more information and see what we were doing and granted their blessing," Adams said.

Landeck, a 1999 graduate of Wheaton Warrenville South High School, was killed in action in Baghdad, Iraq in Feb. 2007 when his vehicle struck an explosive.

The costs of establishing and maintaining the commissary are covered by the shelter's Christmas in July fundraiser and its operating budget, Adams said.

"We will occasionally run fundraisers for it, but we thought it was important enough whether we got donations or not to do this for veterans," he said.

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