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VFW requesting donations for deployed troops

Richmond County Daily Journal - 1/10/2020

Jan. 10--ROCKINGHAM -- The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4203 Auxiliary is preparing to send care packages to local military service members who are stationed overseas.

The effort, now in its fifth year, will send requested items ranging from toiletries to Slim Jims to the 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team, which includes National Guard members from Rockingham, Wadesboro and Hamlet, and soldiers from other units the first weekend of February.

The VFW is asking all schools, churches, civic groups, and individuals who want to help to make "thank you" cards that will be put on the outsides of the care packages. Robin Roberts, president of the VFW Post 4203 Auxiliary, said that on Jan. 18 a group will head out to Sam's Club to pick up the needed items, and added that the public is invited to help box them up on Feb. 1.

"We're trying to send care packages to all local soldiers," Roberts said. "The more (donations) we get the more we can send."

Denita Cauley, senior vice president of the VFW Post 4203 Auxiliary, said the care packages are the "perfect way" for the community to boost the morale of their military members.

"Everyone always asks how can we help? Well here is your chance!!" Cauleysaid in a Facebook post.

Donations can be dropped off at the VFW located at 106 Old River Rd. in Rockingham, given to Robin Roberts at Hudson Brothers, to Richard Robinson at Double Vision, or to Denita Cauley at Maness Tire. Roberts said that financial support is also welcomed to go towards the cost of postage.

With the deployment this past week of 3,500 soldiers from the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne stationed at Fort Bragg and the 2,500 troops from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit stationed at Camp Lejeune following heightened tensions in the Middle East, Roberts said it just "makes us want to do more than we already do."

"We're just praying for all soldiers and America," Roberts said, noting that all members of the Auxiliary have family who have served overseas. "We want to go above and beyond what we can do because they deserve it."

A spokesperson for Fort Bragg confirmed that "some" of the members of the 82nd Airborne deployed were from Ellerbe.

"I think the biggest thing is the concern for the soldiers themselves,' said Cauley, who listed the many close family members she has in the military, past and present. "You get the sense that it's about to get bad. I'm probably more used to it than most."

The VFW listed the following items requested for donation, among others:

--Granola Bars/Protein Bars/Energy Bars/Etc

--Beef Jerky

--Microwavable food (popcorn, roman noodles, etc)

--Peanut Butter/Jelly

--Jello/Pudding Cups

--Tuna and Chicken in Pouches

--Chips and Pretzels in a Hard Container (Pringles, etc)

--Dried Fruit (store bought)

--Fruit Snacks/Fruit Roll Ups

--Trail Mix

--Crackers/Goldfish/Cheez-its (Snack Size)

--Hard Candy

--Gum

--Cookies (store bought)

--PopTarts/Cereal Bars/Rice Krispie Treats (Individually Wrapped)

--Instant Oatmeal

--Drink Mixes (Gatorade, Crystal Light, Emergency)

--Instant Coffee

--Tea Bags

--Kool Aid

--Protein Powder

--Sauce and Seasoning Packets

--Salt and Pepper Packets

--Seasoning Salt

--Condiments (travel size)

--Toiletries/Personal Hygiene

--Travel Size shampoo, conditioner,

--Tooth paste/tooth brush and Mouthwash

Reach Gavin Stone at 910-817-2673 or [email protected]

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