Shoe Sensation manager Terri Rosenkrans received a surprise thank you Wednesday from representatives of Emmette J. Shields American Legion Post #55 for her ongoing efforts to collect socks for veterans and active service personnel

HANNIBAL -- Shoe Sensation manager Terri Rosenkrans received a surprise thank you Wednesday from representatives of Emmette J. Shields American Legion Post #55 for her ongoing efforts to collect socks for veterans and active service personnel.

Jess Ornelas, hall rental trustee with the American Legion, his wife, Victoria, American Legion District 1 installing officer, and Legionnaire Dale Walden presented a certificate of appreciation to Rosenkrans. She said this was the fourth year of the sock drive at the store — this year, about 180 pairs of socks were donated to the veterans at the Illinois Veterans Home and Mexico Veterans Home, along with members of the Missouri National Guard in Hannibal.

Victoria and Jess Ornelas divided the sock donations and brought bags to each location, noticing the happy responses on the veterans' faces. Jess Ornelas said many older veterans prefer to wear heavy-duty socks instead of shoes.

“I'm glad that you're here doing this,” he said to Rosenkrans. “You can't believe, these veterans are so appreciative — any little thing you give.” Walden echoed that sentiment.

“As a disabled veteran of Vietnam, I'm really thankful to you and everybody,” he said.

Rosenkrans said she appreciated the chance to make a difference with the support of fellow community members.

“I love doing anything we can do to help veterans, or homeless, or anybody,” she said. “Anyone we can help, I love doing that. I love seeing the support that the community gives by donating the stuff to help us.”

Rosenkrans was eager for the start of the fifth sock drive — after Labor Day, she plans to set up a container to collect a new batch of donations.

tmcdonald@courierpost.com