OC restaurant, non-profit celebrate 30 years of serving Thanksgiving meals to those in need

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- Frank Garcia marks a milestone of helping others as he takes part in the ceremonial carving of the turkey on Thanksgiving.

His restaurant, La Casa Garcia, and the We Give Thanks Foundation celebrated 30 years of serving Thanksgiving meals to thousands of people in need in Orange County.

A small gathering at his restaurant grew to a massive event that now takes place at the Honda Center parking lot in Anaheim. Garcia anticipated more than 10,000 people walk through the service line. He said they just need some help and a place to spend the holiday.

"All these people are my family. I haven't had a Thanksgiving at my house for 30 years, but this is my family. I'm so happy they like it," Garcia said.

Anaheim Ducks' players and volunteers served the food on Thursday. Volunteers, who began prepping on Tuesday, mashed more than 3,000 pounds of potatoes, carved 600 turkeys and cut 3,000 pies.

Each person provided a hot meal, reason to smile and spread the message of Thanksgiving and giving back.

During Thursday's ceremony, Garcia said he looks forward to celebrating his 50th anniversary at the Honda Center.
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