Airman scares up some Halloween fun

DOVER AIR FORCE BASE — Airman stationed far and away often find unique ways to celebrate the holidays. For Halloween, Master Sgt. Kevin Veneman, 436th Security Forces Squadron NCO in charge of commercial vehicle inspection at Dover Air Force Base, takes decorating to the next level.

Veneman is a base housing resident whose yard has been catching the attention of everyone who passes by. His variety of scary decorations includes a skeleton tree to an actual hand-built hearse being pulled by zombies.

“We decorate for Halloween because it’s one of our favorite holidays,” Veneman said. “Growing up, my brothers and I would always make a big deal about Halloween. My mom would sew us costumes and we’d do whatever we could to scare the neighbor kids. When I had my kids, I really wanted to share all those great memories with them, and I still like scaring the older kids. My family also loves helping out and getting involved with it.”

Master Sgt. Kevin Veneman

With such a longtime tradition, their collection has grown over the years.

“My wife and I have always decorated in some capacity since we were dating, but really picked it up when we had our oldest child,” Veneman said. “We started incorporating family members and acquiring and building new items each year, leading up to where we’re at now. I am starting to run out of room in the garage to store things, and since I like to keep the garage usable for my wife to park, it gets tricky placing the items in there.”

The Veneman family starts preparing for the holiday months in advance each year. Not only do they decorate the yard surrounding their home, but the inside of their house is equally as festive.

“I cannot express enough how much it brings a smile to my face when people come up to talk about the display, drive by slow to check it all out, and make our house a mandatory stop on their trick-or-treat route,” Veneman said. “I enjoy hearing neighbor kids say they hear other kids and parents talking about it at school. I started doing this for the memories with my family, but it’s also something I really enjoy bringing to the community.”


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