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People Taking Action: 94-year-old woman knits special blankets for servicemembers

Posted at 8:38 PM, Feb 10, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-11 06:20:58-05

Virginia Beach, Va. - People taking action come in all ages, like Bertha Dempsey, a 94-year-old widow in Virginia Beach who loves knitting.

She's especially passionate about knitting Afghan blankets for our military.

"Oh I love it! The most satisfaction is when I finish one of these and know that it's going to help a veteran."

Over the years, this widow has knitted hundreds of Afghans for veterans. She says she does this because of a family connection.

"My husband was a veteran so I  think it's nice to remember the guys, girls also." She adds with a laugh.

In addition to her husband, her daughter served in the Army.  Bertha's son, like her husband, served in the Navy.

With those strong family ties to the military, it's no surprise Bertha is determined that her passion for knitting benefits those who've served.

"Just have to get 'em there so they can be delivered to the veterans," says Bertha.

That has been the issue. Since at the age of 94, Bertha doesn't get around like she used to. So how would she get them to the veterans?

NewsChannel 3 was eager to take action and load up three bags of Bertha's handmade Afghans and head to the Hampton VA Medical Center.

The residents like Army vet Robert Thomas were grateful.

"On behalf of the rest of the residents, we really appreciate this and thank you very much," says Robert Thomas.

We wanted to make sure Bertha was recognized for what she's doing.  We presented her with a NewsChannel 3 People Taking Action award along with a $300 Visa gift card from our community partner Southern Bank.