Home for the holidays, is not on the menu for everyone. There are plenty of folks working on Thursday.
Columbia firefighter Robert Hughes knows it's not where the meal is shared, but who's there to share it that makes the dinner extra special.
"This is family," said Hughes. "We spend 24 hours together; in a sense it's family."
While folks around the Midlands are feasting, the firefighters are working. But they say they're thankful they can spend this holiday with an extended family.
"It's a family away from my immediate family," said Hughes.
Like many enjoying the dinner, Hughes has dedicated years to the Columbia fire department.
"I knew coming in the door, you will miss some holidays," said Hughes. "I've missed almost nine years worth of holidays."
But Hughes and his fellow firefighters say the rewards outweigh the sacrifices. And for one moment, they're taking time out to enjoy a well deserved meal.