Thank a soldier

While many of us are caught up excitement of the holiday season, others are spending their time quietly caring for others. Since it can be hard to hear anything through the holiday advertising noise, I wanted to draw some attention to one little boy’s heartwarming wish to send a “thank you” card to every soldier overseas serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This little boy spends summers with his grandfather, a Vietnam War Veteran whose health was compromised as a direct result of his service. He began accompanying his grandfather to his many appointments at the VA Hospital where he witnessed a woman sewing a hat for one of the soldiers in the hospital. Inspired by her actions, he asked if he could do something for the troops there. On the Fourth of July, he delivered enough hand written thank you cards so that each patient received a card. He then decided he wanted to thank all the men and women serving in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

After a lot of research, he determined that there were 180,000 troops deployed in the two conflicts, and at this time has handwritten about 13,000 thank you cards. After conducting several media interviews, he has received supplies for his project from several local businesses as well as individuals. In addition, he has received a letter of support and autographed picture from Vice President Joe Biden.

This caring little boy has accomplished a lot, but with more than 100,000 cards to go, he would greatly appreciate having hand written cards to add to his project. If you would like to help, please make (instructions are below) and send your cards to: Thank You Project, PO Box 8574, Surprise, Arizona 85374.

Card making instructions

-Get a sheet of colored construction paper
-Fold in half vertically
-Cut along fold resulting in two pieces of paper
-Fold each resulting piece in half to produce a card (roughly 4 x 6 inches)
-Front of card should read “Thank You”
-Include a personal message inside (ex: "For serving our country,” “For protecting our freedom,” “For your courage”)
-Add any other message of thanks and encouragement you would like
-Sign the card


Note: There's no time limit on this project.  If you're too busy with holiday happenings to work on the cards right now, please bookmark this page and come back to it after the holidays are over.

Kim McGrigg is the former Manager of Community and Media Relations for MMI.