Glen Smith

Veterans Week celebrations continued on The University of Alabama campus Thursday.

The Office for Veteran and Military Affairs presented the Leroy McAbee Sr. Distinguished Service Award to retired Army Colonel Glen Smith. He served in the Army from 1969 to 1991 and is currently the treasurer of the Exchange Club in Tuscaloosa.

“It’s a little bit surprising to me,” Smith said. “I didn’t think I would qualify for such a distinguished award.”

He said the Exchange Club donates to the Tuscaloosa Veterans Memorial Park, sponsors the Rotary Club’s annual Honor Flight, passes out flags at various Veterans Day events, and most recently became a sponsor of the Tuscaloosa Runs for Veterans 5K. Smith said he enjoys giving back to fellow service members, but also enjoys interacting with the young people joining in.

“I’m encouraged to see the young people signing up for the military services and I’m impressed with the caliber of people that we’re getting,” Smith said. “I have the utmost respect and appreciating. I was in the service for 22 years and I had a tour in Vietnam and served overseas, and I think it’s just great. I think the military does a great job defending us and protecting us, and I salute them.”

Each year, the award is presented to honor a veteran of the U.S. military who has continued to serve his/her community through philanthropic and/or volunteerism in order to enhance both the community and the citizens living there.

The award is named after Leroy McAbee Sr. who served in the Korean War. He has a rich history of giving back to the Tuscaloosa Community.


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