The hammering and diggings was part of Mission Serve, an initiative launched last year by first lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden. The volunteerism at the Veterans Administration in Westwood was just one of many activities across the country.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger were on hand to encourage more people to volunteer and they stressed the importance of supporting our veterans.
"We cannot continue to live in denial. We have to confront this. Our men and women need help when they come back. We cannot look the other way. They need help," said Schwarzenegger.
Among the volunteers was Cpl. Peter Tosh, a U.S. Marine who served in Afghanistan and was honored to help his fellow men and women in uniform.
"It's definitely more meaningful in helping the veterans being able to sit here and get the thank you's because they know where I'm at. They know they have been in my shoes and it's good to serve here and give back to them," he said.
After the volunteers' initial efforts Thursday, a group of Eagle Scouts will continue the project to extend the ramp from the garden to the parking lot.