Trace Adkins, Denzel Washington, Bruce Willis, Jessica Simpson, Robin Williams, Drew Carey, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kid Rock, Toby Keith, Will Smith, Gary Sinise, The Zac Brown Band and Wayne Newton – What do they all have in common? They all believe strongly in supporting our troops, regardless of political views, or belief in whether or not the US should have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
While this list of celebrities who support, give their personal time to entertain our troops and visit injured service members is impressive, one thing on which they can agree: Our soldiers cannot be at their best when they are worried or concerned about their loved ones back home.
Many people realize the importance and impact of sending cards, care packages and holiday greetings to our men and women serving has on their morale by showing that we are thinking of them and to thank them for the sacrifices they make, all too often the ultimate sacrifice.
“I have loved every minute of performing for them around the world. So, Thank you to all those who choose to serve, thank you to your families who sacrifice so much.”
Gary Sinise on touring with the
The families of our military also make great sacrifices and they more than deserve our support throughout the year. Perhaps the holidays are the worst time for our soldiers and their families. The holidays add a greater burden to the hearts and souls of those serving so bravely, so far from home, to protect us and our right to celebrate as we please. Many of those serving on the front lines have children back home and their families often live on a very tight budget throughout the year, not to mention during the holidays.
“These men and women are over there because our country sent them, and we have the absolute necessity to try to bring them as much happiness as we can.”
Wayne Newton – Entertainer and Chairman of the USO Celebrity Circle
Our military men and women know that freedom isn’t free, so do their spouses and children. The price of freedom is much higher than most citizens are willing to pay. While they are paying this price with their own sacrifices, they can’t always afford to purchase the gifts their children deserve. Won’t you help them create holiday memories. making the holidays as bright as possible, while mom or dad (or both) are serving?
Your family budget likely has a few dollars to spare, or perhaps you are trying to find just the right charity to support during the holidays. Please remember one of the best ways to support our troops is to also support their families.
A list of some resources to help our military families give their children a brighter holiday:
National Guard: a contact list for each state’s National Guard;
USO: Adopt-A-Child: This is the link for the USO Metro Chapter, which serves Washington, DC and Baltimore, each USO chapter has the same type of program, but you must go through the chapter’s contacts to get donation information;
Sears Heroes at Home Wish Registry: Sears offers a Wish Registry to the military much like a bridal or baby registry;
Operation Ensuring Christmas: for the children of fallen troops
Note: In researching this article I found a lot of outdated and uncertain resources. I double checked these programs to assure they are current and recognized as legitimate.
If you are trying to find a more ‘local’ program, contact: local armed services recruiters, military bases, National Guard Armories and the local USO chapters. These local contacts know with whom they have the best relationship.
Regardless of your political views or your belief in whether or notshould be in Iraq or Afghanistan, you should agree that OUR TROOPS DESERVE YOUR SUPPORT! The families of our military troops also deserve your support. They are not the ones making the decisions to be there, but they are the ones on the front lines, risking everything. Help lighten their burden by helping make the holidays a little brighter for their children – our littlest heroes.