In their Own Words: I’ve never felt so proud to be a Soldier

In September, Operation Gratitude volunteers helped bridge the divide between grateful Americans and thousands of Heroes serving in uniform both around the world and here at home, by assembling and delivering care packages filled with hand-written cards and hand-made items to First Responders, Honor Flight Recipients and other Veterans, New Recruits and deployed Service Members.

Here is what it meant to just a few of our care package recipients to receive personal, heartfelt messages of gratitude from people like you, in an Operation Gratitude Care Package last month:

To the Volunteers at Operation Gratitude:

I cannot express in words what your care packages do for our soldiers. The letters I received today brought joy to an otherwise lonely heart. I’ve never felt so proud to be a soldier in the US military. I am a husband and father of four. This is my first deployment and I have never missed a holiday with my family until this point. Your cards and very helpful items are a great reminder of the love I have for my family and country. Thank you for your support and I will ensure that we pay it forward.

God Bless,

1LT W.B., AR


I just wanted to take a moment to stop by and say thank you for the wonderful package I have received from you guys! The handwritten notes and handmade hat were such sweet and thoughtful gifts.

Thanks to all the thoughtful and caring people who made and put together the packages. What you do truly makes a difference. Everyone who opened their package today said it was like getting Christmas in September! Thanks for fueling the fight!

Thanks again,


I am writing as an Honor Flight guardian to let you know how heartfelt your gift was to my veteran!  He was extremely moved and touched by the outpouring of gratitude and love he felt when he received his Operation Gratitude box. My thanks to you all also, for your time, love and dedication in making our valued veterans feel so appreciated! Please extend this “thank you” to all those who assisted in making this happen.  

Sincerely yours,

P. M., guardian

What you did, went a long long way with us Firefighters! We went through and looked at all the stuff and couldn’t believe how much was stuffed into the red bags!!! We felt blessed and appreciated and talked about the kindness of the people that put this together. We also felt undeserving if that makes any sense? Many of us feel we have received a gift of service. We are blessed to serve! There is no greater gift than to serve our fellow man in times of need.

Asst. Chief C.D.
Maple Plain, MN

Operation Gratitude,

Thank you for all that you do for the United States Military and all of the members that defend our freedom and the American way of life. We received your care package for our unit and were extremely pleased. Deploying to austere and hostile combat environments is part of the job that we signed up for. Supporting us with the things that you provide is a great morale booster for our unit.


Thanks a million…

I wish to give my utmost thanks and gratitude for the gifts that you all have most genuinely blessed me and all the soldiers in my company with. I and many others were moved and several of us (including myself) felt like crying when reading all the notes, letters, and cards of encouragement. These couldn’t have come at a better time: I face being away from home, leaving my 5 year old son and my most precious 38 weeks pregnant wife who is close to delivering another boy. I read the notes, snacked on the food, right away tried the scarf (being it’s been cold here in Europe for a little while now), and read the funnies. I greatly appreciate all that you have done for us and pray these boxes help many more like me and my company.

SPC ​P.​H.

C Co. 115th BSB 1ABCT 1CD

Our Soldiers received your care packages, and we wanted to send you a sincere, heartfelt THANK YOU! We truly appreciate all your organization does to support our Soldiers and Families.

Thank you again for supporting A Co, 2-5 CAV, 1ABCT, 1CD!

K.S. (Spouse of a deployed Service Member)

Thank you all very much. It was a great welcome home. The care packages were a special treat and very much appreciated. God bless you all for the work you have put into doing this for us veterans.


Thank you for all the goodies I received, yesterday from the Honor Flight. Again, thank you for everything, this was a memory I will never forget.

F.R., Veteran

Thank you to everyone for taking the time to show your support for our troops and our great nation.

God bless!

HHC, 35th Combat Aviation Brigade
Missouri Army National Guard

I would like to thank the men and women at Operation Gratitude for all the thoughtful care packages. I can promise y’all it means more than you’ll ever know to these soldiers and myself.


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When I look back at my journey over the past 3 years and 8 months as the CEO of Operation Gratitude, the one thing that sticks out the most are the hugs.

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