'It is difficult to be away from family:' Bucks' staff served 200+ turkey dinners for MFD

Kenneth Hardiman

MILWAUKEE -- The Milwaukee Bucks' culinary gave thanks to first responders on Thanksgiving, Thursday, Nov. 28 -- preparing turkey dinners just for them.

"We've been preparing for this day," said Kenneth Hardiman, senior executive chef. "It's one of our highlights we look forward to in taking care of our first responders."

They put together more than 200 fresh meals for Milwaukee firefighters who work day and night no matter the holiday.

Travis Jones

"It is terribly difficult to be away from family on days like today," said MFD Battalion Chief Travis Jones. "To have the opportunity to receive food so we don't have to worry about going out to prepare food for ourselves is a tremendous thing, so we're very thankful to the Milwaukee Bucks."

The Bucks players couldn't take part in this effort, as they were on the road Thursday for a game in Cleveland, but they were there in spirit with the Bucks' culinary staff -- dishing out delicious meals.

"I got here probably at 5 or 6 o'clock this morning to make sure the turkeys were going, fired and roasting," said Hardiman.

Bucks' staff provides Thanksgiving meals for MFD

This has become an annual event for Hardiman and his crew.

Bucks' staff provides Thanksgiving meals for MFD

"Gordon Food Service, one of our partners here at Fiserv Forum, donated a lot of the food," said Hardiman. "We do a butter roasted turkey, sage gravy. It comes with some artisan rolls with butter, roasted vegetables, stuffing, of course, mashed potatoes and gravy. We could go on and on -- apple pie, pumpkin pie."

The firefighter then returned to the station -- ready for a night on the job with full bellies and warm hearts.

"I'm a turkey guy myself, so I can't wait to get my hands on the turkey and the pies," said Jones. "I guess it's the day that you can kind of let loose and unbuckle your belt a little bit."