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Thank you from a soldier
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Dear Editor:
To the Great Bend Military Moms and company,
Thank you so much for the generous care packages you sent to me and my fellow service members here in Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. Your packages all arrived right around Thanksgiving, and were a very nice boost at a time that can be very lonely when you are deployed. It may sound cheesy to say, but better than any of the candy or games or anything else that was in those packages was the recognition that people back home still think about us occasionally.Please convey my special thanks to Kaylin Hillegeist and Emily Bond for their kind letters.
The one thing that I would like to share in this message is the impression that I had the other day that really reflects how I feel about your gifts. We are serving here in Combined Joint Task Force-Inherent Resolve fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria, and in that mission we have a coalition of over a dozen countries. Our HQ here in Kuwait probably has about 1,500 or so troops and maybe about a third are from coalition nation partners. I have good friends here who are Aussies, Brits, and Kiwis (New Zealanders) and I must admit that there are many things about their armies that I prefer to ours. However I’ve noticed something that happens quite a bit here.
Oftentimes when we get care packages like yours, we will eat as much as we can, but sometimes the generosity of people sending stuff from back home is so great that we just can’t take everything. We’ll place the candy, cookies, and other items from the care packages in a common area for other people to take and enjoy. I’ve noticed, however, that there is a disproportionate number of our coalition partners who spend a lot of time at the care package table, and the new ones always seem a bit confused as to where everything is coming from. One time I asked a French soldier if he ever received anything like that from home. He responded that of course they receive mail from loved ones and items from back home, but never, never, would strangers from some town in France think to send a care package to a group of deployed Soldiers they had never met. I get very cynical and disillusioned sometimes here and think that our country is headed down dark paths, but gestures like yours remind me that there are people who care and are thinking about us, and that there is hope for our country’s future.
We are so appreciative of your gifts and what they signify. We all hope that your holidays are filled with joy.
CPT, U.S. Army
Combined Joint Task Force- Inherent Resolve