EL RENO, Okla. (KFOR) – Employees at the VFW post in El Reno remain without their jobs after a severe storm damaged their place of work last week.

“The last week has been devastating to us,” explained VFW Post 382 Auxiliary President Nancy Salsman.

Their hub of patriotism, community, and service has been temporarily closed down since the destructive forces of severe weather came upon it on Aug. 28.

The roof of the post was ripped off and heavy rains damaged the ceiling inside.

“We do so much for this community and for us to be closed right now is pretty heartbreaking,” Salsman said.

She told KFOR they’re creating a raffle to raise money for their three canteen employees, a club manager and two bartenders, who faithfully serve their cause.

“They’re too valuable to lose,” she expressed. “We need to make sure we can keep them and pay their wages while our post is closed.”

The club manager, Shannon Martin, said the two bartenders need the help most, sending thanks in advance for all monetary and raffle item donations from the community.

“It’s important,” Martin said. “Gas bills don’t stop coming. Mortgages don’t stop coming. They still have doctor’s appointments. And for us to provide for them an income while they’re volunteering for not only our veterans, but our facility, is incredibly important to us.”  

To learn about how you can donate raffle items or money to VFW Post 382, email Nancy Salsman at nms_1958@yahoo.com or message the post on their “VFW Post 382 – El Reno” Facebook page.

VFW leadership said it could be at least two months before they’re up and running again.