June 2017

“We would like to thank you all for the awesome baby baskets we received, they are adorable! We have already started to use them with our Marines who are having little ones! Also the care packages arrived in Australia and the Marines are very grateful for them. They took a picture and wanted me to send it your way, I also posted on our Facebook page. Thank you again for everything!”
R/S
SSgt Teresa M.

“On behalf of a lot of people, I want to express my thanks to you and your ministry team at Saddleback Church for your on-going support of our Marines and Sailors, particularly for the amazing welcome home breakfast you provided for our CLB-7 Marines and Sailors who just recently returned home from a deployment to Kuwait and Iraq.  Your efforts truly make these homecomings special as they add a special, beyond the routine, dimension.  I know your collective efforts represent many people who act on their spirit of giving and generosity on our behalf.  You and they continue to amaze with your sustained engagement and consideration.  While our Service’s deployments are not at high profile as those of several years ago, they continue unabated, although smaller in scope.  I’m sure those who deployed appreciate being considered through your giving actions.

Thanks as well for your Coffee and Chat series you also continue to sustain for the benefit of our troops and families.  Again, many thanks for your time, effort and generosity.”

Sincerely and Respectfully,
Col. Jeff J., USMC

 

 

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“We had a tremendous time with you all this past Tuesday! Wow, you all know how to make us military members feel special and appreciated. We thoroughly enjoyed taking part of your work day. Our Marines greatly appreciated the opportunity to help give back for such an honorable cause. For the Marines who participated, it was good for them to see first-hand the process of good people doing good things for our military. I have no doubt that when they deploy and receive a care package, they will remember and appreciate the day they spent with you all and appreciate the love and work behind it.  Thank you for allowing us to take part in this wonderful organization.”

God bless,
V/R,
LT Phillip S., CHC, USN

 

 

April 2017

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My name is April and my husband is a marine in the 1/11 department. I am writing to thank you for the loving basket that was given to me made by your program. I am expecting a baby boy this month and appreciated every detail put into the basket. My favorite part was it all being green considering that is my favorite color. Anyway, I just wanted to thank you and your team for all that you do and this beautiful gift you provided for my unborn child.”

With lots of love and appreciation,
Ssgt & April P.

January 2017

“We just wanted to say thank you for the very thoughtful and useful gifts which your organization sent to us. Each package has been distributed and will be well used. We greatly appreciate the thought and effort that went into each individual bag. The handcrafted pens, the amazing beanies, and all the glorious treats, were a wonderful surprise and made the days of many marines. This came at the perfect time and definitely boosted the morale of our section. We cannot thank you enough. We are truly thankful for your support during this deployment. Thank you and keep up the great work!”

~ Semper Fidelis and Merry Christmas from the USS Makin Island, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit

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“Thank you from my heart.”

“Thank you so much for the gifts! I truly inspired us during this holiday season.”

“Thank you. Hope your Christmas was awesome!”

“Thanks for the meat.”

“Thank you so much, I hope you had a Merry Christmas.”

“Thank you so much for the incredibly thoughtful and awesome gifts. God bless & Merry Christmas.”

“Thank you for the packages! They lifted the spirits of everyone in our section.”

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“Hello. My name is Toni D. Sorry it took so long for this email, but I wanted to thank you all very much for my son’s Christmas present. He loves his truck. It means so much to my family and I that you took time to do this. It was very special. Thank you again. Have a blessed night.”

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“My son, Brayton, and his platoon are safely home from Kuwait!!! Thank you for all your prayers and all that the volunteers did sending the care packages and cards. While Brayton was deployed, he was promoted to 1st Lieutenant. So happy to have him back in the U.S.!”

~ Angela S.

December 2016

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“I would first like to start out by expressing how blessed and happy I was when I received one of your organizations care packages. The support and love from home is what keeps us all going out here on the other side of the world. Everything from the beanies, bags of candy, and loving support letters put a smile on mine and all of my units faces.
 
However I do have a question. There was a young man by the name of Mark and he had wrote a letter to me and I was trying to write him back. I know it’s a long shot but I was just wondering if there was any way I would be able to get a return address so he would get a letter from me. He didn’t have a last name on the letter but his favorite sport is baseball, he loves to skateboard  and he has a brother and two sisters. Hopefully that would help possibly narrow down or find him. If not that’s alright I just wanted to give it a shot and see if I could get a letter out to him.
 
Again thank you so much for all the love and support. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season. It is people like you and your organization that keep us in the fight. As for a prayer request I was wondering if you could say a couple good words for CLB 11 and the 11th Meu out here on the USS Somerset. Thanks again!

Sincerely,
Cpl. James M., USMC

November 2016

“Thank you very much for your gift! I appreciate you think of us while we are out at sea. Happy holiday’s from the Middle East.”

V/R,
CPO Cozy A

“On the Somerset we received 11 care packages from Saddleback Church. The boxes were disseminated amongst the Marines and Sailors in the battalion and they are very grateful because of it. Diane Reece was the name on the paper work and if you have a means of contacting her I’d like to thank her for the morale boost. I’d also like to thank you for coordinating everything that is coming in.”

Respectfully submitted,
Master Sergeant S.

“I am writing to you to thank you for the support of my company of soldiers here at Qayyarah West Airbase. You have been supporting elements of an engineer task force assigned to the 39th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne. These soldiers were assigned by our organic Army Reserve battalion (the 863rd Engineer Battalion) in order to assist the 101st Airborne with construction a new base. These soldiers come from 3 separate companies of the 863rd Engineer Battalion: the 282 Engineer Company, 176 EN Company, and Forward Support Company.

My engineers began this process of reconstructing an airbase from the rubble and ruins that were left many months ago. Out here, we have very few amenities; simple things such as snacks, hygiene items, etc. are difficult to come by. Your enduring support of my engineers continues to lift their morale, especially around the holiday season. I’m sure you can imagine that this time of the year is quite difficult, made even more difficult by the limited connectivity at our present location.

Thank you all for taking the time to think of us. Wish us well and pray for us as we continue to support local forces in defeating this evil enemy that has plagued the world for much too long. God bless.”

Very Respectfully, 1LT Brayton K

“We have just received your goodie bags and we are all really thankful for all you have done.  I believe and receive all your prayers in Jesus name.  Could you please keep my family and myself in your prayers? We really need all the prayers we can get. I’ve been preaching God’s word to everyone around me, hopefully those seeds will grow.  Thank you for your time I will keep all of you in my prayers. Thank you so much.”

Semper Fi, Sgt Tommy M

“I would like to send my most sincere appreciation to you and your team at Saddleback Church.  This is my second deployment with this unit and your organization has been awesome to the troops.  I wish I could have everyone in our unit email their appreciation to you, but not everyone has an email account.  So on the behalf of all Marines assigned to CLB 11, thank you.”

Respectfully Submitted, MSgt

“I just wanted to say thank you very much for all the wonderful goodies! We all ran to see what was inside, just like little kids opening gifts on Christmas morning!”

~ Jake G, SrA, USAF, Germany

“Thank you for inviting us to the appreciation lunch yesterday. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. I am always impressed with the amount of volunteers that come out and help put things together for our service members. You all definitely go above and beyond the call of duty to support us and we are truly grateful. I can’t thank you enough for all you do. We look forward to continue working alongside.”

God Bless,
Chaplain Stephens

“Thank you so much to you and your church for our baby gift basket. I work with Christine Winicki and when she dropped this off, I must admit, I was truly amazed by your thoughtfulness. Thank you all so much for your time, prayers and generosity.  Our new baby girl, Shelby Rose is doing well along with “mama bear” and we feel very blessed. Best wishes to you and Saddleback Church.”

~ Lt. Col. Patrick M

“Ya’ll have been one of the largest blessings in our lives and leaving ya’ll has been the hardest thing to cope with as it’s like leaving family.  You’ve provided smiles, chit chat, friendly and safe places as well as food and gifts for under the tree and amazing blankets and quilts to cuddle with [at Coffee & Chat.]  You’ve all been such a huge part of my and my girls lives and I’m thankful for every single one of you.  I can’t wait to check in and hear all the amazing things you are all doing. We love and will miss you all.”

Love,
Catherine, Riley and Regan

September 2016

“I was a part of  an Intel battalion and am retired from the Marine Corp. after 21 years of service.  The handknit and crochet caps meant so much while we were deployed. Especially at night, after tough days out in the field. To be able to put on that cap at night, pull it over your eyes, and block out the realities of working in a war zone and feel and experience a touch from home was priceless.”

~ Pastor Jeff, Saddleback Church San Diego (opening soon), who wandered in on our busy crochet team meeting.

“Thank you again for all your support and everything. Can you please tell the ladies that helped get that gift bag together how much I appreciate it and their prayers?”

~ Marine and pregnant mother

“Thank you all so much for the breakfast and the Christian resources. I briefed the Command Officer on it today and he was very pleased and felt very supported with what you all did and are doing”

~ Chaplain Stephens

August 2016

“Friends at Saddleback,

I want to take the time to thank you for the care packages that my platoon received. I will also use this chance to tell you a bit about my platoon. My platoon is a horizontal construction engineer unit of the Army Reserve. “Horizontal Construction” means that we do earthwork such as runways, roads, berms, ditches, entire FOB’s earthwork, etc. I have 38 soldiers from places such as Guam, Puerto Rico, Colorado, Indiana, Texas, Missouri, Kansas, and more. My platoon is currently spread out working on a breadth of projects at multiple locations in support of Iraqi forces as these forces gain footholds from which to strike at ISIS. Some locations are very austere, so my soldiers really appreciate the hand wipes, and for those who are quitting smoking gum is very useful. Candy can brighten anyone’s day whether it may be a soldier or civilian. My soldiers thank you for taking the time and effort to send us these care packages and keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. God bless.”

~ Brayton K.