Sweet Success… Again!
The delivery went well!
Here are a few pictures from the journey!
Here is Linda’s account of the delivery:
Our sincere thanks to everyone who donated and/or supported our 2012 Marshall Plan – another successful year! We couldn’t have done it without you!
Sgt. Zachary Johnson and Corpsman Christopher Johnson, our liasons with Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, were very helpful to us in getting set up to distribute our donations on Monday, October 15. Corpsman Chris Johnson also told us some of his fascinating and hair-raising experiences as a medic in Iraq and Afghanistan and gave us insights on some of the items that deployed military members enjoy receiving in care packages – especially snack foods, protein-rich foods, energy drinks, and baby wipes. Nine-year-old Gannon, who was part of our team this year, really enjoyed hearing why tough men and women in uniform wanted baby wipes, and Corpsman Johnson enthusiastically explained this. He also taught us how to chill a can of soda or energy drink by placing it in a wet sock and hanging it where it can catch a breeze. This cools a drink down to about 70 degrees, which tastes like it’s straight from the fridge when the outside temperature is 120!
On a more serious note, being able to personally distribute some of our Tastykake and gift card donations this year was such an incredible privilege. Funny how something as simple as a box of Tastykakes could bring smiles to so many faces. Some had never had them, some had gotten them in care packages while deployed, and some related being from Philadelphia or surrounding area hometowns and having grown up with them. They were very happy with the variety we had to offer and the opportunity to try new flavors!
We were able to speak with (and shake hands with) so many wounded warriors – male and female – and with their parents and spouses as well. We heard stories that inspired and humbled us, and many that gave us chills and brought tears to our eyes. One mother told us of her daughter who’d been shot five times. Another mom’s son had stepped on an IED that was intentionally detonated when someone saw him approach it. Both moms were told their children would probably not make it – yet over a year later, they are with us and doing fairly well. A mom and dad accepted some Tastykakes for their son who was in surgery as we spoke. Other parents told us of being at Walter Reed to celebrate their son’s 25th birthday – something they didn’t think he would see when he came to the Medical Center earlier this year. One warrior with a prosthetic leg told us of the sled hockey team he’d just joined. So many – too many – were multiple amputees, some ambulating on prosthetics or with crutches, others still in wheelchairs. We saw many scars and bandages, an abundance of artificial limbs, many orthopedic devices, and a variety of mobility aids. Yet the wounded warriors we saw and spoke with always had a smile and conveyed a sense of pride and honor in being able to serve. They thanked us sincerely for the cupcakes and gift cards that seemed so insignificant compared to what we gratefully thanked them for – their service and sacrifices for our country.
– Linda Reinbold
Looks like they had a great time! Wish I could’ve been there. Thank you so much for all your support and donations! We really appreciate it! We look forward to doing this again next year! I hope you enjoy Linda’s account of the delivery and the pictures courtesy of Kari and Linda.