Fornetti Dental Center puts a smile on veterans' faces

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IRON MOUNTAIN, Mich. (WLUC) - Usually, Fornetti Dental Center's offices are closed on Saturdays. But on this particular Saturday, they were open providing free dental care for veterans.

"I really appreciate it. I appreciate what he's doing for us. If we don't show up, he's not going to show up,” said Dan Recla, a veteran who served in the navy for four years.

Dan Recla has made it his priority to come from Niagara, Wisconsin to Fornetti Dental Center's “Dentistry for our Vets” in Iron Mountain for the last four years.

"I don't have dental insurance. It's not offered to us, and sure I could afford it,” he explained.

But since this free dental care opportunity is available, Recla and many others say they're going to take advantage of it.

"I believe that if we don't participate, they aren't going to participate, and I really appreciate what they do for us."

Even though Dr. Fornetti's office has been doing this service for years, some veterans still say they're overwhelmed with emotion by how much the community cares.

"Everything is so special,” exclaimed Recla.

Dr. Fornetti says he would hope veterans would feel this way.

"This is one of the best days of the year. I mean we will leave here tonight exhausted."

But Dr. Fornetti says it's worth it to put a smile on these veterans’ faces.

"It's going to honestly be the best exhaustion that we could ever feel."

For several years, Dr. Fornetti has provided free dental care for veterans near or around Veteran's Day after he realized only nine percent of their veterans qualify for any kind of dental benefits.

"We just thought that is so wrong for what our veterans have done for us and for our country, and so we thought, while we can't change the laws, but we can change our little world here,” he explained.

Dr. Fornetti thanks the community and local businesses in the area for making this annual event a success.