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75th Annual National Donut Day

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Released 1 June 2012

Media contact:

Audrey Esther

Community Relations Director

The Salvation Army Ozark Area Coordination

Office: (417) 862-5509 ext. 116

Cell: (417) 763-1357



Event honors Salvation Army "donut lassies" who helped WWI soldiers


Springfield, MO (June 1, 2012) Today commemorates the 75th annual National Donut Day holiday.

     The event, held each year on the first Friday of June, was established in Chicago in 1938 to honor The Salvation Army's "Donut Lassies" who served donuts to soldiers during World War I. The donuts became synonymous with The Salvation Army, as well as the American soldiers who were returning home with the nickname, "doughboys." This significant occasion also established the donut as a long-standing symbol of the services The Salvation Army continues to provide today.

      Last year alone, The Salvation Army helped more than 207,000 local Ozarks residents with such things as rental and prescription assistance, shelter, feeding programs and a variety of other social service programs & services. To hear directly from local residents who have been helped by The Salvation Army Ozark Area Coordination please visit  ;

Branson resident James Gallmeier - "We're just trying to bounce back"

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75th Annual National Donut Day Fun Facts: 

- National Donut Day began in 1938 during the Great Depression as a way to raise awareness for The Salvation Army's social service programs.

- National Donut Day commemorates the "donut lassies," female Salvation Army volunteers, who provided writing supplies, stamps, clothes-mending, home-cooked meals, and of course, donuts, for soldiers on the front lines.

- Approximately 250 Salvation Army volunteers provided assistance to American soldiers in France starting in 1917 during WWI.

- With limited resources, these treats were fried, only seven at a time. The Salvation Army's Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance cleverly thought of frying donuts in soldiers' helmets.

- Last year, 30 million Americans received assistance from The Salvation Army's 3,600 officers, 60,000 employees and 3.4 million volunteers.

         To support the year-round outreach of The Salvation Army Ozark Area Coordination financial contributions can be sent to The Salvation Army, P.O Box 9685 Springfield MO or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY or by visiting - 82¢ of every dollar goes directly toward programs & services that help local Ozarks residents in need.


About The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, visit


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