I’ve heard it hundreds, if not thousands, of times since I started as the CEO of Operation Gratitude three years ago — handwritten letters are the most cherished items in our Care Packages. As a Marine who deployed to more than 50 countries — from the first Gulf War in 1990 -1991 to my time in the Middle East during 2008 — I can tell you nothing boosts morale while you are deployed more than receiving handwritten letters.
When the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the nation in early 2020, we at CSX turned to our trusted partner, Operation Gratitude, to determine how our Jacksonville-based transportation company could join forces with theirs to meaningfully connect with the country’s new frontline responders.
September 9 is National Teddy Bear Day, and I wanted to share a few stories that demonstrate Operation Gratitude’s Battalion Buddies are much more than just stuffed bears — and give you an opportunity to bring smiles to thousands of military children whose parents will be deployed this September 11th.
This week we launched the Clear Your Stash Challenge, and it is the perfect time to tell you about some of our knitting and crocheting champions who have impacted thousands of lives since our Handmade With Love program started in 2007 with Scarves for Troops.
One such champion is Diane, who posted this photo of herself a few weeks ago on our OG in Action Facebook Group. With her most recent donation of 360 scarves, her lifetime total is now 5,577 scarves with accompanying thank you notes on all of them! I know her actions were not only admired by our growing community of volunteers but also inspired others to do more.