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Iowa Jaycees Deliver 8,000 Phone Card Minutes to the Troops!

iowajayceesphonecardsThe Iowa Jaycees recently took part in a state-wide challenge to collect phone cards to be given to military personnel stationed overseas. The state's original goal was to collect 5000 minutes worth of phone cards. At the October All State Convention, chapters turned in an astounding 8500 minutes. A small idea, and a little effort led to a HUGE impact on our soldiers from Iowa. The Iowa Jaycees took on this challenge with great enthusiasm since many chapters have members that are currently deployed or have friends and family members that are serving overseas. Chapters saw this as a great opportunity to help the thousands of troops currently overseas. These brave men and women are away from their loved ones for 14-18 months at a time and the JCs wanted to do something to help make this time a little easier on the soldiers as well as their families.   In addition to chapters collections, the Iowa Jaycees raised minutes during the weekend of their Annual Meeting. Members caught using their cell phones throughout the weekend, were fined 1 military minute donation.  Members could buy insurance, allowing them full use of their cell phone for the weekend,  for a 10 minute donation. Heather Foley of the Iowa National Guard was on hand Sunday morning of All State to receive the cards which she made sure to distribute to Iowa National Guard Troops that would be deployed in the near future. Other cards yet to be collected will be sent to JC members, family and friends that are currently stationed overseas. (This item is posted as part of the Cooperating Partnership between the Jaycees and SupportOurTroops.Org, working for the benefit of the active duty troops and the families.)

Soldier Trades Football Aspirations for Army Career

By Army Spc. Justin Snyder Special to American Forces Press Service CAMP VICTORY, Iraq, Nov. 17, 2008 Army Sgt. 1st Class Twillie Curry had long since traded his aspirations of becoming a professional football player to follow another dream €“ becoming a soldier. But when a special visitor stopped by the 619th Contingency Contracting office here Nov. 7, Curry, a contracting officer, couldn't help but recall his high school glory days. [caption id="attachment_3064" align="alignleft" width="250"]fod_trades_football_01_26_09 Sgt. 1st Class Twillie Curry, left, reminisces with Keith Elias, retired New York Giant and Indianapolis Colt football player, a morale booster trip. Elias and Curry both played high school football in the same area of New Jersey at the same time. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Justin Snyder[/caption] While some soldiers knew of Keith Elias as a former professional football player who once played for the New York Giants and Indianapolis Colts, Curry had a closer association. Curry and Elias both played high school football in New Jersey at the same time.While some soldiers knew of Keith Elias as a former professional football player who once played for the New York Giants and Indianapolis Colts, Curry had a closer association. "Keith played for Lacey Township, another team in our area, and he was an all-state running back," said Curry, a Cliffwood, N.J., native. "His team went undefeated also, along with four other teams. We were state champions, but I wished we could've had a playoff amongst the teams from the other conferences." The players never met on the playing field, but Curry kept up with Elias' career. "To see a guy like Sgt. 1st Class Curry, who grew up playing football in the same area as me, it shows that it really is a small world out there," said Elias, who was visiting the soldiers as part of a tour sponsored by a faith-based organization. Curry went on to college football and played in his freshman year, but said he was more interested in seeing the world. That quest led him to join the Army in 1990. Even after enlisting in the Army, Curry still held on to some of his professional football aspirations. "While at my first duty station in Germany, I wrote a letter to the Frankfurt Galaxy asking for a tryout," Curry said, referring to the semi-pro football team. "I wanted one last shot at playing football." The team wrote back to him, but he was conducting field training and never made it to the tryout. His dream of being a professional football player was over. But Curry had already embarked on a new dream, one that he is still living 18 years later -- the Army.  He said he has no regrets, noting that football gave him important attributes like mental toughness, teamwork and discipline, that helped him along his Army career. "One of my assignments was as an instructor at Fort Lee (Va.), and I served as a teacher for a lot of young soldiers," Curry said. Above anything I have ever done in football, I got to share my knowledge and help guide young soldiers. "I had soldiers come back to me down the road and tell me that I helped them in their career path, and they remembered the things I taught them," he said. "It made me proud to know I made a difference, and I'm proud to be serving my country." (Army Spc. Justin Snyder serves in the Multinational Division Center Public Affairs Office) 000logo_news_distributionDistributed by  

Danville Jaycees Step Up for the Troops!

thumb_il-jayceesspaghettidinnersignageJaycees "Coalition for the Willing"-Danville, IL, July 5, 2008  -In a time when the media claims Americans are tired of hearing about the war in Iraq, yet yellow magnetic ribbons saying Support Our Troops® are as common to see on a car as license plates, the Danville Jaycees took up the mantel of responsibility to honor the hardest working and most under-appreciated individuals in the greatest of all nations on Earth.  The troops! With their project " Coalition for the Willing" playing on the words of this nation's leaders and chaired by U.S. Army veteran R. Kenny Smith Jr., the Jaycees stood on street corners to solicit funds, sold ad space for flyers, and ran a spaghetti dinner featuring guest speaker Marty Conaster, the National Commander of the American Legion. The Danville Jaycees set out to pay for a plane ticket home for one local soldier during the Christmas holidays. This project reached all it goals, and some by three fold, and got coverage on several television news stations. This project raised community awareness of the organization, gave relief were relief was needed, and the members managed to raised almost $2,300.00 cash plus $1,500.00 in-kind via services and discounts. The Danville Jaycees currently have committed to pay for two privates from the U.S. Army to come home during the upcoming 2008 Christmas Season. Plans are also underway to pay for a third soldier to come home after he returns from his third tour in Iraq in Summer of 2009. Great work Jaycees! The Jaycees are a Cooperating Partner of SupportOurTroops.Org thumb_il-jayceesspaghettidinnersaucethumb_il-jayceesspaghettidinnersignagethumb_il-jaycesscertedit_1thumb_il-jaycees-kennyandunclemarty2    

Troop Highlights: Air Traffic Controller Fulfills Long-Term Plans

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Brent Hunt Special to American Forces Press Service CAMP TAJI, Iraq, Sept. 5, 2008 €“ For one Iron Eagle soldier here, there was never a question of if she would serve. The only question was when.
[caption id="attachment_3592" align="alignleft" width="250"]troopbhramdatairtaffic Army Spc. Radha Bhramdat watches as two Black Hawk helicopters land at the Camp Taji Airfield, north of Baghdad, Aug. 28, 2008. Bhramdat is an air traffic controller with the 4th Infantry Division's Company F, 2nd Battalion, 4th Aviation Regiment, Combat Aviation Brigade. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Brent Hunt[/caption] "Since I was 15, my mom started giving me the idea of serving in the military. She is real pro-military," Army Spc. Radha Bhramdat said. Bhramdat, of New York City, is an air traffic controller with the 4th Infantry Division's Company F, 2nd Battalion, 4th Aviation Regiment, Combat Aviation Brigade. "Then, when I was a freshmen in high school, 9/11 happened and the event had a big impact on me," she said. "I lived very close to where it happened, so joining the military was inevitable for me." Bhramdat begin her Army career by serving in the New York, and then North Carolina National Guard. After four years of serving in the Guard, Bhramdat made the move to active duty. Now she coordinates aircraft movement from the Camp Taji control tower, just north of Baghdad, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. "I've been doing this for about two months, and this job is more than I expected," she said while keeping close watch on the airfield. "Once you get an aircraft [on radar], you start communicating with them, and then you tell them where you want them to land. It is a lot to worry about with all the other aircraft in the area." Bhramdat works in a company of more than 40 air traffic controllers who are responsible for safely orchestrating the take-offs and landings of all types of fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft. Soldiers from the company are spread out in different locations in support of the Iraq mission. With flights departing or landing day and night, air traffic controllers coordinate their movements to prevent accidents. They coordinate air movements at sites ranging from temporary landing zones to fixed-tower airfields. The company, based at Fort Hood, Texas, stood up only a year ago and is still growing. More than 80 percent of the controllers were straight out of advanced individual training when they joined the team. Soldiers new to the company are required to perform 154 days of on-the-job training, which includes monitoring the progress of aircraft, conducting local ground control, and then becoming certified by the Federal Aviation Administration for the particular airfield where they work. "This is her first experience at a very, very busy facility," said Army Capt. Amanda Violette, Company F commander from Nobleboro, Maine. "Growing our own has been the biggest challenge with this company. She has shown so much potential it is unbelievable." (Army Sgt. 1st Class Brent Hunt serves in Multinational Division Baghdad with the 4th Infantry Division's Combat Aviation Brigade.) Source:

A Fine Thank You from the USS Port Royal

navyussportroyal-8-08txtAugust 12, 2008 - Captain of the USS Port Royal writes Support Our Troops® and says:  Thank you very much for the generous donation of popcorn to the crew of USS Port Royal.  My sailors and I greatly appreciated your thoughtfulness and the hard work that went into making your donation possible.  Your patriotic support is a great encouragement to us all.   Sincerely and Mahalo,  David B. Adler,  Captain, U.S. Navy, Commanding officer.

Outdoor Magazines to the Troops

magazinesAugust 29, 2008 - The troops overseas in several locations overseas just took delivery of  22,800 brand new top of the line outdoor sportsman's magazines from SupportOurTroops.Org. Half of them went to the Army in Korea (remember our neighbors are protecting us in many places in addition to Iraq).    Half went to the Navy.   This is all thanks to our cooperating partner, The Sportsman Channel.   The military tells us these are a real hot sought-after item over there.  This is a $79,800 value.  It is the least we can do for those who do so much for us every day.   Imagine how much more could be done if America's Fortune 500 companies donated!!

* Service members, please provide a non .mil address. Thank you.