Veteran’s Day serves as a reminder of those who have protected American freedoms, upheld our country’s honor and worked to keep us safe at home. As with the memorials on 9/11, It’s nice to see all the commentary, Facebook posts, and gratitude spread to veterans at this time — yet one woman goes a step further, donating her time and effort to uplift the lives of veterans.
Pin ups for Vets is a not-for-profit project and annual calendar devoted to uplifting ill and injured veterans. Gina Elise, is the woman behind the idea – she wanted to give back to people like her grandfather, a World War II veteran, and show appreciation for their service to our country. The calendar depicts a WWII era inspired pin-up style ala Betty Grable (Grable was an American actress, dancer and singer whose iconic backward-glancing, million-dollar-Lloyds-of-London-insured-leg-baring, one piece bathing suit photo helped make her the number one World War II era “pin-up girl.”). So popular, Life magazine included her photo in its 100 Photos that Changed the World project.
Elise’s modern day pin-up calendar aims to do for veterans now what Grable and pin-ups like her, did for members of the military back then: uplift their spirits and help speed healing. She travels the country visiting military veterans at VA hospitals with the hope of making a difference. “We meet such incredible veterans at each hospital, it’s always special to me,” said Elise.
Holiday 2012 was “the first where we don’t have an more World War I vets, so we really need to cherish our World War II vets because they won’t be around much longer,” she advised.
Elise created this not-for-profit organization, and embarked on her national and international tour visiting Vet hospitals and donating money to support efforts and purchase research equipment at veterans’ hospitals across the US.
The Pin-Ups for Vets calendar is available for purchase online, and also may be purchased and donated to a hospitalized veteran or active duty deployed military. They cost $10 and are tax deductible. For more information, visit www.PinUpsForVets.com