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Retired Marine Spreads Message of Thanks

Mike Prosser retired from the Marine Corps in 1995 after serving 20 years. 

Today, the former master sergeant can be seen nearly every day of the year volunteering in northern Virginia community driving around in his pickup truck, helping disabled veterans get around to their appointments, donating aluminum cans to charities, and picking up stray dogs and cats and delivering them to animal shelters.

A man pets a pig across a fence with woods in the background.
Pig and Pumpkin
Mike Prosser gives a hog named Big Boy a rub after feeding him donated pumpkins, Nov. 16, 2022.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 221116-O-D0439-001
A man holds a box filled with can tabs.
Can Collection
Mike Prosser collects cans and tabs to donate to the Ronald McDonald House, Aug. 28, 2023.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 230828-O-D0439-001
A man cradles and talks to a cat.
Cat Talk
At a cat adoption event, Mike Prosser cuddles with a cat that was left behind, Sept. 12, 2023.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 230912-O-D0439-001
On a recent fall day, Prosser said a Navy veteran and a Marine Corps vet — ages 96 and 97 — shared their World War II experiences as he drove them around to appointments. He said they had some interesting war stories about serving in China.

A veteran kneels next to another in a wheelchair as they pose for a photo.
Veteran Camaraderie
Mike Prosser volunteers to drive veterans with disabilities in northern Virginia. These two veterans, ages 96 and 97 served in China during World War II, Sept. 28, 2023; one was in the Marine Corps and the other served in the Navy. As Prosser drove them to their appointments, he said they shared their interesting, wartime experiences.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 230928-O-D0439-001

Why does Prosser do it?  

"I love all people and animals," he said.

Two Marines in dress uniform pose for a photo with Santa.
Toys for Tots
Mike Prosser delivers two shopping carts filled with toys to Marines in Manassas, Va., Nov. 4, 2023. The toys are for the Marine Corps' Toys for Tots program for needy children.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 231104-O-D0439-001
Pumpkins lay on the ground beside a pickup truck.
Pumpkin Pickup
Mike Prosser’s pickup truck comes in handy for hauling pumpkins for pigs, Nov. 9, 2023.
Photo By: Courtesy of Mike Prosser
VIRIN: 231109-O-D0439-001
Prosser, whose  partner died three years ago, said he regularly talks to those who are depressed or even suicidal — especially around the holiday season — in an effort to boost their morale.

"It's hard to talk to someone who is down and out and find the right words to say to comfort them. But I try to remind them how much they have to be thankful for," he said. 

"I just hope that they know someone cares about them," he said. "I do."

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