FORT BENNING, Ga. — Hundreds of thousands of U.S. military personnel are serving in every corner of the world this Christmas. Though they can’t be home for the holidays a bit of home has come to them.
Across the country, a $25 donation to a program called “Trees for Troops” can buy a tree for a military family. This season, 17,000 trees were delivered to 65 military bases around the globe.
Excited families at Fort Benning lined up to see their free trees arrive. Each had a message, many written by donors. One said, “Thank you for your bravery.”
Sgt. Tyler Power just got back from Afghanistan where some comrades were killed.
“This war has gone on for a long time so I think over time people kind of get numb to it, but…”
“These people remembered.”
Retired Army Sargent Marvin Hill now works at FedEx overseeing the deliveries. He said he was inspired by the tree he once got while serving in Afghanistan.
“It’s the thing that keeps you going. It’s a taste of home.”
Seven-year-old Abby Reyes led brother Noah and mom Heather to a tree so perfect it left her speechless. The tag had a candy cane, a tree and a message.
“Can you tell me what this says?”
“Thank you,” Abby replied.
“That’s very nice of them don’t you think?”
Abby’s dad, Patrick, is an infantry staff sergeant on the base. They decorated the tree with ornaments that were family gifts or showed places they have visited.
When they topped this year’s tree they added one special ornament more about a gift from those who remember to those who serve. It was a note that read, “Thank you.”