HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Susie Brookins is the owner of ‘Smoken On the Go and Little Diner.’ She spent her Veterans Day cooking and feeding any veteran who walked through her doors for free.
“That’s great that individuals would take that initiative to give like that. When they do that, they’re really giving because they’re taking money out of their pockets and really giving,” said Air Force Veteran James Dobbins.
‘Smoken on the Go’ started as a vendorship when Susie’s husband, Walter, retired, after 22 years in the army.
“When he retired from the military he started smoking meat. He always loved to cook outside. He would let’ me cook during the winter time inside but summer and spring were his,” Susie said.
It was always more of a paid hobby; that is, until a few years ago. Walter and Susie were going to expand their smokehouse and sell food on-site. Then, Walter suffered a stroke. His health continued to deteriorate after that, until his death in 2016.
“And I thought, ‘ok, I have got to get this done for him.’ So I got that done and then I just didn’t want to move without him,” she said.
Every year on Veterans Day, Susie and Walter would go out to eat with their daughter, Walisa, in Atlanta. When people found out Walter was a veteran, they would usually take care of his meal.
“So this is a way to give back. I would like to do the same for as many veterans that would come in this place. And I know that would make him happy,” Susie said.
Susie said her husband had a motto. To see them carrying out his motto, she knows, brings a smile to his face.
“In his last words he would say take care of each other. Take care of each other so we’re together, that’s what he wants,” she said.