Here are some great programs to get involved in to show your support [Thanks Gail]

Ways YOU Can Support Our Troops

You have many opportunities to get involved and bless these families in need.

Heroes at Home SM

Specialist Ryan Major
Sgt. Ryan Major

Heroes at Home is a program Sears Holdings has created in partnership with Rebuilding Together in response to an urgent need to assist military families facing hardship. Rebuilding Together, the nation’s largest all volunteer home rehabilitation organization, is committed to bringing warmth, safety and accessibility to homeowners who do not have the financial or physical resources to complete home repairs and other necessary improvements.

By providing necessary repairs or adaptations to homes, Sears Holdings strives to improve the lives of military families across America. Heroes at Home is one of the many initiatives Donate to Heroes at Homethrough which Sears Holdings acknowledges the sacrifice made by our troops every day in the line of duty, while supporting and honoring those heroes who remain at home. Donate now.

Sears Holdings has a longstanding commitment to those who serve in the military and is privileged to assist the troops and their families through several military programs and initiatives.

Sgt. Ryan Major of Silver Spring, MD is the first beneficiary of Heroes at Home. Major was critically injured while on patrol in Iraq. Heroes at Home honored this hero by providing an elevator, a wheelchair accessible bathroom and bedroom, landscaping and a deck. Donations to Heroes at Home are being accepted in stores and online at Sears.com.

Heroes at Home is a program developed through the combined efforts of Sears Holdings Corporation and Rebuilding Together to help improve the lives of servicemen and women and their families. Heroes at Home is a service mark owned by Sears Brands, LLC.

Next


› Sgt. VanderWert's story

 


Updated June 27, 2007 with a link to a page that honors all the Soldiers who have died defending our freedom in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is maintained by one man who has made it his life's work to honor these men and women. Here is a link to the best website I have found giving tribute to Heroes.

This page is a tribute to the Soldiers and their families that are serving.

Here is a letter I received along with some pictures from Jo Anne and her family  It is inspiring to see how people work through the hardship and reach out to others.  Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

Updated 2/20/07 It is my intent to provide a place for one FOB [Forward Operating Base] and their families to communicate with us. I will be exploring other ways to do this and am interested in any input. firstimpressions@comcast.net

Thanks, Bill Sullivan, Irish Blessings email: firstimpressions@comcast.net WEBSITE: www.IrishB.com

 

 
updated 4/3/07 Rough times for the troops we are trying to encourage. Here is an article detailing the great work of Chaplin Fenton. Please read the article in full and pray for these men and especially their families. Blessings, Bill Sullivan

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/02/world/middleeast/02death.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Good Morning!  Hope this finds all of you doing great.  The kids and I are doing fine and we heard from Aaron again this morning.. that’s always comforting and a good way to start off the day for us.  Well.. I promised to keep you guys updated if any news or things came from down range… so here is a news article on Grey Wolf.  Aaron’s unit as well as his commander, COL Sutherland is mentioned in the article.  Many of you have helped us over the holidays with our projects the kids and I do for the soldiers… so I thought you might like to see who you’ve been helping us to support.  The Chaplain the kids and I talk so much about and help however we can with his mission there, is also in this article.  I cannot tell you how much it has meant to me and the children for the ways you’ve all uplifted and supported us in these efforts and helped to take care of the troops!  The letters from the kids in Lampasas have been such a joy to read and the Chaplain has really enjoyed giving those out!

 

I will put out a disclaimer on this article… I was just not able to read it all.. hits too close to home for me and tears began to fall….

 

So… this is all the news I have currently, and just letting you know Aaron is doing okay.  This is taking its toll on the Chaplain.. please keep him in your prayers, and all of our soldiers serving overseas.  And again thank you for all of your support for them on the holidays… so far we haven’t missed one holiday.. and I hope we haven’t missed any soldiers as well there at our adopted base! We’ll keep going until they all come home!

 

In his loving care,

Jo Anne and family

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/02/world/middleeast/02death.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Please read through the letter from Jo Anne, and the Chaplin. It is

"My name is Jo Anne Robertson and I’m on a mission for a Chaplain serving overseas in Iraq.  He is desperately trying to raise the moral of the soldiers on his FOB (Forward Operating Base).  My husband also serves on this base .. he himself has left behind five children.  I am trying to teach the children about “serving” and supporting the soldiers having to go into harms way each and every day.  Our only son, is angry and sad, and ran behind the bus the day his Dad left crying and begging him to not to go .. AGAIN. sigh.  Our son has found purpose and some peace to his daily routine by being involved with us as a family helping the Chaplain overseas uplift the troops there. 

 

We have stamped 300 gift bags and crafted little things to go into the bags, some green mints, a few goodies.  But even though it doesn’t seem like much when we look at what we’ve done.. we’ve put our heart and what money we can into our efforts.  I don’t know if there is anything you could do to help us contribute to this Chaplain’s efforts, but if you could donate any small item… even a St. Patrick’s Day pencil for each soldier.. anything.. would be grateful.  If you feel you help us or are led to do so, I would make sure they knew you did… if you have anything you could do or send.. however small.. it’s just a fun little bag we are trying to piece together for them… I promise it would be appreciated.

 

If you could help, you could respond to me at this email.

Thanks for listening.. and thank you for your time,

Jo Anne Robertson

Ft. Hood, Texas"

***********************

-----Original Message-----
From: Chaplain Fenton
Sent:
Monday, January 01, 2007 12:17 PM
To: Robertson, Jo Anne
Subject: Re: RE: Small favor

 

JoAnne, awesome e-mail  made me cry  awesome thanks

 

Hey if they have not already started on Valentines day or their hearts are not really committed   I do plan on a BIG day for ST Patricks  (my plan is to ignore Valentines day because everyone's Valentine is not here) I would love home made school cards for the troops for ST Paddy's and anything else

 

Blessings, CH Fenton

 

----- Original Message -----

From: "Robertson, Jo Anne" <joanne.robertson@us.army.mil>

Date: Monday, January 1, 2007 8:41 pm

Subject: RE: Small favor

 

> Well I am glad we could help your vision and mission of kindness

> come true.

> It was our honor and our joy to be able to do so and the children

> learned so

> much I feel from it.  My heart was touched beyond measure when the

> 92 year

> old stranger and military spouse paid for almost all the postage

> for all my

> packages.  I was so humbled.  She had no ideas the worry I had

> "Did I spend

> too much.. will it be okay.. how much will the postage be... but I

> must just

> let go and trust God will watch over us and it will all be okay. 

> We are

> doing a wonderful thing and it will bring smiles to those who are

> so far

> from home and too often forgotten how great the sacrifices are

> they make for

> us"  She did not know my thoughts.. my worries... that was God

> intervening I

> know to teach me and to touch me.  You and your mission for

> everyone was my

> greatest Christmas present I could have received.. so it is I who

> owe YOU

> thanks.  If there is anything I can ever do to help you.. please

> let me

> know.  I know my sixth grade son's class is planning to take you

> guys on for

> Valentine's Day.  I do not know what it is they will do.. just

> that his

> teacher is planning something.  Kevan clung to his Dad the day he

> left, begging him not to go, he'd already gone before, begging him

> to move to the

> back of the line, then running after the bus, and throwing up. 

> I'm so

> grateful Kevan is in a school where they reach out and not only

> comfort but

> teach about serving and supporting our military.. even though

> there are not

> that many military in their school.  When I saw one of the

> Christmas cards

> made by a third grade boy there for Christmas ... I teared up in

> front of

> the class and wept.  He had gotten a tiny rock from the playground

> and glued

> it to his card.. he wrote... "Here is a piece of home for you and

> thank you

> for fighting for us..".  He has no military member in his family,

> so it

> especially touched me.  Again.. just glad I could help and be a

> part of

> meeting a need.  I wish I could have been there to see the fun ...

> if any

> pictures ever get released.. I would dearly love some as would the

> little church in Florida and the Georgia office. I'm sure you will

> be receiving

> more surprises throughout the year ... lol.  Please do keep after

> Aaron to

> play... he has been shy about that his whole life. I'm so happy to

> see him

> in church again.  Thanks for everything you do sir. 

>

> May God Bless you and your family and watch over you and our soldiers.

> Jo Anne

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Chaplain Fention

> > Sent: Monday, January 01, 2007 8:11 AM

> To: Robertson, Jo Anne

> Subject: Re: Small favor

>

> Jo Anne, words cannot express my thanks for all you did   wow  thanks

>

> Blessings upon your whole giving family

>

> YIC, CH fenton

 

 

Good Morning Everyone... [from Jo Anne 2/18/07]

It is with mixed emotions I send this email. I can "hear" the

excitement and pride in Aaron's words in his email... And I am very very

proud of him. I know the "good" moments are few and far between, so I am

grateful for a good experience to come his way in that place. Aaron's

emails and phone calls have grown fewer and much farther between as more and

more "blackouts" (where they are cut off from all commo abilities until next

of kin are notified.) Aaron's job was one that kept him on one base in a TOC

(Tactical Operations Center)I thought. But he has put himself out there to

take on more roles and more responsiblities than is called upon him, and

does each with pride in any capacity and anything that is asked of him. .

Aaron is not a "security detail", but I can see his eyes glistening over at

the chance and his eagerness - My heart sank however as I saw these

pictures... As his wife and friend... I see him boarding the helicopter that

took him there... And as a target... I see the gentle man I love .. That

I've watched grow and love these precious four children he welcomed so

eagerly into his life and adopt. I see the 9 year old that sprays her

things in her Daddy's spray so she can smell him.. And feel close to him..

The son that ran behind the bus crying out for him to stay when he left...

The teenage girls that love him so much and ache over all the special

moments he is missing. I see my friend and my very heart in his gentle

heart who is in harms way... And all the many others who are there with him.

My heart aches... But I am proud of him and I will stand in the gap with him

and all of our troops... And support them. Aaron loves what he does... And

his phone call concerning this trip and photos... Well he said it was so

wonderful to see the people coming out clapping and waving and seeming truly

appreciative for them. For those moments for my soldier.. Or any other.. I

am grateful for whatever warmth and goodness it brings our soldiers. I will

be grateful for the day when they can come home to us.

Each of you have been a special light to our family... And we are

deeply grateful to you all for everything. Mom, Dad, Laurie, Mr. Grace, and

Mr. Sullivan... We thank you for everything and share these photos with you

with a humble and grateful heart. THANK YOU!!!

THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING US AND THEM DURING THIS TIME!!!!

Jo Anne and family

P.S. Mr. Sullivan... The cards came!!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

**********************

Happy Sunday…[from Jo Anne 2/18/07]

     It is with joy and a humble heart I send you this email.  I just wanted to share this website this beautiful stranger has made and the sunshine he has brought.

In some way… you have touched our life, or one of our children’s lives in some way and we wanted to share this website with you.  I wrote to nearly 100 businesses asking for support for the troops at FOB Warhorse… but this one was the only one to respond with a “Yes we will help” answer.  And not only did he respond with 300 items for St. Patrick’s Day… he volunteered future donations, even though I was not expecting that…and he has built this website. It brought tears to my eyes…and reminded me…we are not forgotten or alone.  Each of you have touched our life and made these times better in some way…and I cannot tell you how deeply grateful I am for your special gifts to us. 

            I’ve learned so much from my parents… they are half my beating heart truly.  The letter my father wrote on his WWII experience for his grandchildren who where studying this in History class…to the many boxes and days spent helping us find things to send to the troops…the blankets Mom made to bring all the way to the base we were at to take the to Veterans in the nursing home we frequently visited.  We have truly been guided in our family by two wonderful loving people.  To the stranger who gave us two weeks on the beach at home to spend with our family in the summer Aaron came home the first time so we could all be together with our children and close to family… I’ll never forget that or all you’ve done.  It was our first vacation, and one we’ll never forget. To our family and friends who have shared many laughs with us, as well as tears… we are so lucky and blessed to have you in our lives and could not do it without you.  From the care packages of much needed hygiene products to snack items or just things to make them smile. To the educators who have been so supportive and encouraging to our children and inspired them.  The sandwich shared at lunch from a new friend because you forgot your lunch, to the smile and warmth you’ve brought in some way to make one of those “hard days” softer and better and helps to put the worries away.  To our family in the Lampasas ISD… I get very passionate when asked about you… your school district, it’s team of some of the most sincere and caring educators I’ve ever seen in my life…where the child truly DOES come first… I cannot thank you enough.  I’ve seen you be there for those children and for each other… maybe it comes from being a closely woven community… but you’ve blessed our family more than I can ever say and I’m so happy my children are with all of you there.  With the exception of those of you who are my own family… 98% of the persons receiving this email came into our lives with me never realizing that you’d become so special and important… you have made a lasting impact upon us and I thank you for that… these are the moments and examples I teach my children to cherish.. and inspire them to do themselves.. random acts of kindness and goodness.  How sometimes our actions can affect someone else so deeply and mean so much… no matter how small or great the gesture… you have touched our lives and make a difference!!! I am grateful for each of you!!!

            I encourage each of you to simply continue on being those wonderful examples and know you are valued and respected and we are blessed to have had you come into our lives and thank you for all of your support for our soldiers and for our family… you really do make all of this so much easier to bare.

 

With a grateful heart,

Jo Anne Robertson… and FAMILY

 

 



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