Blackberry Smoke sells out The Fox Theater in Atlanta, Georgia, on November 25, 2022

VFW Post Teams Up to Fight Childhood Cancer

Veterans of Foreign Wars Acworth/Kennesaw Post 5408 has teamed up with locally-headquartered charity, Lana Turner Foundation, to raise awareness and money to fight childhood cancer. The Lana Turner Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that, since 2011, has been using “the power of music, art, and community to promote and benefit children’s physical and mental wellbeing as we work to find the cure for children’s cancer.” Brit Turner; drummer for internationally acclaimed rock band, Blackberry Smoke, and founder of Lana Turner Foundation, is among the leaders in this fight on behalf of the children and their families.


Since the PACT Act took center stage, more people have taken notice of the impact toxic exposure has on veterans who served in harms way at home and abroad. As military servicemembers face uphill battles, like various cancers, because of this exposure, long-term effects are often not fully understood or realized. Whether it is exposure to toxins in Vietnam of the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s or in the Middle East of the 1990s, 2000s, and today, many more have been affected than originally expected. The children and families of these brave warriors are finding similar challenges because of inherited genetic changes from their toxic-exposed veteran mothers and fathers who have battled cancer. Combine that with the significantly reduced funding currently spent on battling childhood cancer, that battle and, therefore, urgency intensifies.

Blackberry Smoke Homecoming Concert

As the Thanksgiving holiday weekend took shape, Blackberry Smoke sold out The Fox Theater. While the concert satisfied music enthusiasts on the evening of Black Friday, the efforts to raise funds and awareness about childhood cancer and its lack of funding didn’t stop there. VIP experiences were offered to fans of the band before and after the concert, topping off the evening with a Meet & Greet session. Every step of the way, nine VFW and Auxiliary members from Post 5408 jumped in to help make the fundraising efforts a great success.

VFW Post 5408 attends LTF Fundraiser at New Realm Brewing Company

New Realm Brewing Company Pre-Party

Prior to the concert, a Pre-Party was held at New Realm Brewing Company. The brewery and distillery have been teaming up with Blackberry Smoke, most recently with the collaborative creation of Blackberry Smoke American Lager. Four VFW Post 5408 and Auxiliary members were in attendance to make this pre-party a hit, drawing enthusiasts from around the southeastern United States. Throw in a tour of the brewery, discussion with brewmaster, Mitch Steele, and some fun raffles, the New Realm experience was a success for all who attended.

Caffeine & Octane Car Show - October 2022

Caffeine & Octane

Extending beyond the concert efforts, VFW Post 5408 has been partnering with Lana Turner Foundation to raise awareness by leveraging other highly trafficked, popular events like the largest continuous monthly automobile show, Caffeine & Octane in Kennesaw, Georgia. On the first Sunday of every month, VFW Post 5408 and other comrades and Auxiliary members from the surrounding VFW District come together at the Caffeine and Octane car show to bring much-needed attention to the challenges of childhood cancer. This monthly car show draws tens of thousands of auto enthusiasts to the area.

With more veterans and their families feeling the terrible effects of their toxic exposure during military service, the need for great efforts remain. The local VFW Post 5408 in Acworth, Georgia, stands ready to serve!