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story.lead_photo.caption Tradd McLerren, 12, and his sister Tarrah, 14, organize donations Friday in front of Capitol Plaza Hotel. Volunteers and veterans collected canned foods, non-perishable items, and diapers and baby wipes to help military families and veterans in need. The food drive will continue from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. today outside of the hotel. Photo by Sally Ince / News Tribune.

If it served only one veteran Friday, the Mobile Vet Center stop in Jefferson City would have been considered a success, Mark Johnson said.

Johnson is the outreach coordinator for Columbia Vet Center, which operates the mobile center.

Instead, multiple veterans, including some who served in Vietnam but have never been entered into systems that give them access to Veterans Affairs services, attended an event at Capitol Plaza Hotel, where they were assisted in doing tasks such as signing up for health care benefits.

"It went pretty well," Johnson said.

He said the hotel was not only a spot where the center was deployed for the morning, it also served Friday as a location for a Veterans of Foreign Wars food drive and a site for vendors who offered other services to veterans.

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