Veteran Poverty - Newsletter | Feed Our Vets
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Feed Our Vets Fest – June 9th – Utica NY

Feed Our Vets Fest

Celtic Harp Stage
Varick St, Utica, NY

Saturday, June 9th
5:00pm – 11:00pm

Gridley Page & Showtime Performing

Sponsored by

Celtic HarpTMS TrailerClinton Tractor & Saranac Brewery

Proceeds Benefit Feed Our Vets

Tickets: $10 presale $15 at the door

Tickets on sale at Big Apple Music 800-317-9566
8441 Seneca Turnpike New Hartford, NY

Custom Humvee Auction to Raise Funds for Veteran Hunger Programs

To raise funds for our Veteran hunger programs, Feed Our Vets is auctioning off this amazing customized Humvee at the Saratoga NY Auto Auction  on September 21 & 22, 2018.

For more information, visit:

“A dramatically customized 1991 military High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, more famously known as a Humvee, has been consigned to the Saratoga Auto Museum’s annual auction this September.

This is not just any used Humvee, this vehicle was subject to a complete, frame off, rotisserie customization by nationally recognized restoration and hot rod specialist Steve Hale of Frankfort, N.Y. The Humvee’s unique paint and features is a salute to America’s veterans and a fund raising effort for “Feed Our Vets©” which is the only national non profit supporting vets nationally and in upstate New York with meals and food pantries.

The M998 HMMWV was developed by the military as a replacement for the Jeeps used in Vietnam. First produced by AM General in 1984 more than 281,000 of these tough and reliable light utility vehicles first gained fame in Desert Storm and later in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Military forces all over the world have ordered these workhorse vehicles.

The idea for this special salute to veterans originated with a Utica based charity called “Feed Our Vets”, a 501 c 3 charity. That organization provides meals and operates several food pantries including a mobile food pantry-serving veterans in central and eastern New York State. Proceeds from auctioning of this Humvee will go to Feed Our Vets, a 501 (c) (3) to help maintain their programs. Feed Out Vets founder Rich Synek says he first had the idea of finding a Humvee to help raise funds for his group after CNN restored a H1 Hummer they had used in the Iraq war and auctioned it off for $1.25 million to benefit the Fisher House Foundation.

In 2015 Synek set off to see if he could find someone to donate a Humvee and last year he received a 1991 AM General HMMWV from Robbins Air Force Base in Georgia. He contacted Steve Hale of Steve’s Hot Rods and Restorations. Steve is well known from appearances on the History Channel’s “American Restorations” program. He jumped on the project when Synek showed him the Humvee.

Now, one year later and after at least 1,000 man-hours of labor the “Feed Our Vets” project has been completed. As Steve says the used vehicle “wasn’t in great shape and they had work to do.” Every piece was dismantled in Steve’ shop, cleaned and painted.

The original 6.2-liter GM diesel V8 engine with GM fuel injection was freshened and runs well. The transmission is a 3-speed automatic and features independent 4-wheel drive. The suspension has been rebuilt. With four doors and a wide wheelbase there is plenty of room in the interior, which has also been completely redone in keeping with the look of the vehicle. All the gages have been replaced.

The stunning and one off green and black paint scheme uses paint specially formulated and donated by PPG from their Crystallance paints which uses crushed glass to provide a striking sparkle. A&P Master Images of Utica donated computer renderings of the vehicle for the customization process. The vehicles features touches like 13 stars painted on the hood along with saluting soldiers on the truck’s sides. The “Feed Our Vets” front and rear bumpers were donated by “Iron Cross” bumpers. The rear roll bar featuring a military star is part of the design and is hand rolled fabricated steel.

The huge tires are 37X12,5R16.5 donated by Pitbull Tires. One of the most memorable features of this special Humvee is the green wheels featuring chrome studs.

Completing the package are special LED lights across the front and rear windows and around the front fenders. Westin Automotive Products donated them.

This memorable enhancement of a military workhorse will be on the SPAC stage to be auctioned off during the Saratoga Auto Museum’s Auction on September 21 & 22, 2018. For more information on the auction or to consign a vehicle contact Jeff Whiteside, Auction Director at 518-587-1935 x22 or”

VFW Joins Forces to Fight Hunger

Feed Our Vets was featured in the April 2018 issue of VFW Magazine, in the article: Food Insecurity: VFW Joins Forces to Fight Hunger.

The article by VFW Magazine writer Janie Dyhouse talks about the problem of Veteran hunger and how Feed our Vets was started.

“Rich Synek remember the day he encountered a hungry World War II vet.  Synek was postmaster in Vernon Center NY in 2008 when he asked the Battle of Okinawa vet why he purchased stamps one at a time rather than buying a bood of stamps.”

The article goes on to explain that the veteran couldn’t afford to eat two weeks out of each month.

“We have a hunger problem,” the VFW article quotes, FOV Founder and Executive Director Rich Synek.

“At the national level, VFW is also alarmed at the number of veterans suffering from what is being called “food insecurity”.  A study by the University of Minnesota School of Public Health found that 27 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan war vets struggle to put food on the table.”

Read the full article at VFW Magazine online.  

Wondering what to do with your used car or truck?

Wondering what to do with your used car or truck? 

Donating your old vehicle to Feed Our Vets, is convenient, easy, and may qualify you for a tax deduction. And best of all, your donation of a used car or truck will make a big difference in feeding hungry Veteran families.


Why not donate your vehicle today?  All you need to do is to complete the simple online form at Vehicles for Charity or call 1-866-628-2277 and they’ll take care of the rest.


They will pick up your vehicle, arrange to have your donation towed, and provide you with a tax-deductible receipt, all at no charge to you.


Call 1-866-628-2277 or visit the Feed Our Vets page at Vehicles for Charity today.


Frequently Asked Questions: 

What can I donate?
You can donate most any vehicle, including cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles and recreational vehicles. They do not have to be currently running. Your vehicle donation will be sold at an auction or to salvage depending on condition.


Is my donation tax-deductible?
Yes, Feed Our Vets is a non-profit organization and all donations qualify as a charitable deduction on your federal income tax return.


What do I need to donate my car?
The title to the car must be in your name. We will also need some information about where the car is located and the condition of the car. This will assist us in scheduling appropriate towing arrangements.


Will you pick up my car?
A towing company will call you to schedule the pick-up of your vehicle. You will need to give the driver the keys to the vehicle as well as your signed title.


How is the value of my car determined?
The IRS allows you to take a charitable tax deduction on your federal income tax form equal to the amount the vehicle sells for at auction unless it sells for less than $500. If your vehicle sells for less than $500 you may deduct no more than $500. If your vehicle sells for more than $500, you will need to include the IRS form 1098C. Vehicles for Charity will supply this documentation after your vehicle sells. We recommend you consult your tax advisor with questions about your deduction.


Feed Our Vets has partnered with Vehicles For Charity to process donated vehicles. Just call 1 866 628 2277 they will answer any other questions you may have and make arrangements to pick up your donation.

Time Is Running Out to Make A Tax Deductible Donation to Feed Hungry Veterans

Time is running out to make a tax deductible donation to 
Feed Our Vets for 2017

This year, we’ve been able to to distribute nearly 275,000 lbs. of nutritious food to hungry Veteran families.
You can help us continue to feed hungry veterans and their families by making your contribution today, and receive a tax deduction for this year.

Fortune Magazine is advising donors to also make their 2018 charitable donations this year, due to the new tax code:


If you’re one of the many filers who will benefit by taking the GOP tax bill’s increased standard deductions – and you previously deducted charitable contributions under the old tax plan – consider making your 2018 charitable donations before the ball drops on New Year’s Eve. By using the new, bigger standard deductions, you’re agreeing not to itemize your returns, which means it’s not financially beneficial for you to give to charities in 2018. This is a point of contention for nonprofits and opponents of the bill. But there is one way to make sure both you and charities benefit (at least at the moment), and that’s by putting your 2018 contribution on your 2017 taxes instead.

Thank you for your support!

Happy New Year!


Rich Synek
Executive Director & Founder

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