photo © 2010 Jerry | more info (via: Wylio)
The whine of turbine motors and the Whup..Whupp.. Whuppp of the rotor blades from a UH-60 Black-Hawk helicopter swooping over the top of my CHU(Container-Housing-Unit) on this cool pre-dawn morning, mark the beginning of just another day here in Baghdad, Iraq.
It’s most likely the same for troops fighting in Afghanistan, many without the luxury of a CHU, sleeping in tents or wherever they can lie down or find some small bit of concealment and respite from the weather and the enemy.
Today is Thanksgiving Day 2010 and I am reminded by my surroundings that each day, courageous men and women who serve overseas face extreme hardships.
Currently over 250 thousand military members are deployed overseas.
Many troops are deployed in far off reaches of the globe. Some on ships a few on submarines and many in other far off places on foreign lands. Over 130 thousand in Afghanistan, 50 thousand in Iraq and close to 30 thousand in South Korea. The remainder in other far off reaches of the World in support of US Interest’s, protecting our Country and Way of life.
While living conditions are one hardship, the one that is the most difficult is the separation from family. This is not a one way event, as the dependents of our military members suffer from the long separations too.
As a veteran I believe, that everyone that serves their country in time of need is a Hero. Unfortunately, oftentimes overlooked in the process is the littlest Hero’s. These are the children of deployed service members who are missing their mom or dad right now.
Around this time of the year, as many of us begin to celebrate our blessings, often our thoughts turn towards our families and those in need. I think it’s time to remind all and to reemphasize the needs that children of deployed service members have.
Two key reports this year, one from the New England Journal of Medicine and the other by the Rand Corporation clearly show the pain from separation and the need.
The NEJM report along with the RAND report signify that children of military parents are adversely impacted emotionally with a parent who is deployed away from home for significant amount of time. This is the main reason that Operation Hug-A-Hero was created. We can and have made huge positive psychological impacts to the children that are recipients of our FREE Hug-A-Hero® dolls.
Our troops have made the sacrifice. Their commitment to serve their country and the American people is unwavering. We at home have so much to be thankful for even in these troubled times.
May your thoughts be with our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Coast Guard and Civilians stationed throughout the world, as is ours.
As today starts the major celebration period for our nation my hope is that from today on and all through the Holidays, you will think of them and help us to bring a little Homeland Security to their little Heroes left behind.
There are many ways that you can help us to meet our mission.
- One simple way is to pass this message along to others; family, friends or co-workers. ( Share Save)
- Email, Tweet or re-Tweet this article,
- join our cause on Face Book
- Subscribe to our News Letter
- Comment on this article.
Fortunately, these days, it’s easier than ever to help others. You don’t have do any heavy lifting, or even make any trips With just a couple minutes and a few mouse clicks, you can donate and save money while you’re doing your Holiday Shopping. Please remember us on Black Friday and Cyber Monday by visiting igive.com
Our Holiday Hugs event for 2010 will launch within the next week – Hug-A-Hero is inviting retailers, businesses, schools, churches and other interested organizations to adorn a holiday tree with OHAH Holiday Hug “ornaments.” Each ornament represents a Hug-A-Hero doll for a child, for a small donation.
If you are into Social Media and want to help with Fund Raising you can also start your own campaign to support OHAH via Crowd rise.
Whatever avenue you choose to assist us in getting our message out, we will all be eternally grateful for your kind gesture and assistance in helping to support our troops and the little Heroes.
Sincerely,Thomas Townsend CTO Operation Hug-A-Hero Baghdad, Iraq
15 actions you can do to help us spread the word.
It’s been an interesting two weeks with the news of the earthquake in Haiti and the ensuing calls for support to help their country in their hour of need. The support has been nothing short of phenomenal from all the stories I have read and all the donations pouring in from all across the world and in our own country here in the United States, there are literally thousands if unique Fundraising events to help the impoverished nation and ailing peoples of Haiti.
Now let’s step back a moment and take a look at this to see what it means to our own country. Our United States mobilized in record time additional military resources, our countries finest Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen were sent on deployment for undetermined lengths of time to help Haiti. For many this is their first time away from home for extended deployments from their families. Right now no one knows how long this operation will continue, but it is sure to be many months. We also still have thousands of our military men and women deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq with more scheduled to depart every day for lengthy deployments away from their husbands, wives and children.
This post is a request, a CALL TO ACTION to ALL whom will read this:
Whether you are a current subscriber to our weekly OPERATION Hug-A-Hero Newsletter, or possibly an RSS Newsreader subscriber, if you’re a Facebook Cause Member or you are reading this from a TWEET on Twitter or just a passerby looking to see what we are all about. Perhaps you came across the Operation Hug-A-Hero blog from somewhere in the Blogosphere?
How you arrived here does not matter. What you do here is of great importance to us and our Military Families. We are not asking for money…or Donations, (although you are more than welcome to contribute to enrich a young child’s life should you so desire to do so….and it is tax deductible too) or as you are shopping online be sure to visit iGive.com. If you buy anything, Operation Hug-A-Hero gets an automatic donation from your purchase.
What we are asking for is an infinitesimal (extremely small) moment of your time to help spread the word about our cause. Haiti is extremely important, but we want to make sure that everyone knows who is helping and that they may in turn need some help of their own. At least the Children whose parents are answering our Nations call to duty. Let’s not forget them!
Here’s what you can do to help:
Please perform one of these small tasks below to help us spread the word about our Mission.
Please HELP US and share our OPERATION Hug-A-Hero site with others:
1. Click on the Share/Save Button Below the article for this post (share or email from here)
2. Forward this post/article in an email to friends, family, neighbors or co-workers
3. Forward your Newsletter to friends, family, neighbors or co-workers
4. Post this article on your Facebook Page
5. Share with your Facebook Friends from the FB Share Button above or the Share/Save Button Below
6. Add our Facebook Cause to your Facebook
7. Tweet this article from the Tweet Button Above or the Share/Save Button Below
8. Follow us on Twitter
9. Retweet this article
10. Make a comment on an article of interest on the site.
11. Subscribe and Watch us on YouTube
12. Sign up for the Operation Hug-A-Hero Newsletter
13. Sign up for our RSS Feed
14. Send our URL (Web site address) to a friends, family, neighbors or co-workers
15. Send an email to
firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them to include Operation Hug-A-Hero in their nonprofit listing.
Our President gets it. In a statement today prior to his State of the Union address on Wednesday, President Obama stated “military families welfare is an important part of U.S. national security”.
After all, this is what OPERATION HUG-A-HERO is all about.
For more information on the Mental Health & Welfare issues that our Deployed families routinely deal with please read the related post below.