Cook-off raises money for local veterans

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo - Many gathered Saturday for a Kansas City style barbecue cook-off at American Legion Post 639. Every ticket bought, raised money to help local veterans.

"All the money that comes in, helps the veterans in this area," Charles Hopkins, President of Vietnam Veterans of America - Chapter 952, said.

Hopkins says they will be able to build wheelchair ramps and meet basic needs, like rent and fill gas tanks.

The Ozark Barbecue Alliance Founder, Michelle Higgins, helped organize the cook-off. There were many barbecue teams and they have been traveling throughout Missouri competing. Higgins says she is glad to lend a helping hand to raise money for veterans.

"This is in my core and I love to do something for all of my friends and family that are in the military," Higgins said. "Just want to thank them."

Rex Krasche, Vietnam Veteran, says this event means a lot to him. He was glad to see so many people brave the cold weather.

"(I) appreciate the veterans that come out from so far," Krasche said. "To Texas to Oklahoma to Kansas City to St Louis to all over to support us."

This was the first barbecue cook-off to raise money for local veterans. Many say they were glad to be a part of it.