My name is Patti,

I had 2 sons that deployed to Iraq. My oldest son Brandon deployed in 2003 and my youngest in 2007.

It all happened so fast. One day I was signing a check for dorm fees for Brandon when he walked into the room and said, “Mom I met a man” and he said, if I joined the Army I could go to Italy…so I did.

Wow,  that was different for me. Not that I was alien to the Army being an Army brat. I just never  thought of my son in this way.

2 weeks later my son went off to Boot Camp and  2 weeks after that 9/11 happened. One year and a half  later, my son, my beautiful little boy was walking into Iraq.

Everything was so confusing and I was scared, so I called my Dad, a Vietnam Vet, and expressed my fears.  When my Dad returned home from the war he was spit upon :(

He promptly told me that my son was short and could run under the bullets.

Oh my … then he told me about care packages — how to make them and what to send.

So I started sending a package a day for 40 days, along with hopes and prayers from home. Right away the packages started flowing and when Brandon’s 1st Sgt. was asked about him, he referred to him as the luckiest man in Iraq!!!

While my son was receiving all these packages from home, many soldiers did not receive any packages or letters. Our heroes needed us!

That was the start of Soldiers’ Angels. Since our mission started, the number of Angels and heroes connected by love, support and gratitude has grown into the hundreds of thousands.

I knew in my heart I wanted to support my son and I wanted to be there as he achieved his destiny. I wanted everyone to help and see how brave my son and all the men and women were. How they were trying so hard and handling themselves with honor. It was just 2 years before his deployment Brandon was sitting in front of the television eating Corn Flakes and watching Scooby Doo. Now,  he was freeing a country.

I said it then and I say it now. How did we raise such fine young people? These fine young brave souls are the only ones standing between me and a Burkah.  I truly believe that.

So, all you Army Mom Strong  Moms of heroes, I tip my wings to you for you have the hardest jobs of all. You have to stand on the sidelines and just love and support.  For this is their time and what a time it is.

May God Bless Our Troops and May God Bless America.

Love

Patti Patton-Bader
Founder, Soldiers’ Angels

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Kiowa Warrior Are you living the American Dream?  Thomas Wolfe said, “…to every man, regardless of his birth, his shining, golden opportunity ….the right to live, to work, to be himself, and to become whatever thing his manhood and his vision can combine to make him.”

The American Dream is different for each person, depending on their definition and desire. I am proud to say that my son is living his American Dream as a U.S. Army helicopter pilot. I raised him to be an independent, strong, and confident man. Most of all, I raised him with the belief that he can choose to do whatever he wants in life and follow his heart and his passion. My mantra has always been, “to thine ownself be true”.

He just did that! When he joined the Army, it was the beginning of fullfilling his childhood dream. He had a vision for his future and followed the path to get there. I am so proud of my son for choosing to live his dream.

In living his American Dream, he is also defending our great nation so that we can continue in freedom and  live our  American Dream too. How great is that?

I believe in America because we have great dreams – and because we have the opportunity to make those dreams come true.” ~Wendell L. Wilkie

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pillows for patriotsBarbara Farrior’s been busy spreading comfort to the troops by providing a comfy place to lay their head! She started Pillows for Patriots to help provide a better night’s sleep for deployed troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The idea for these travel size pillows was born when Barbara Farrior’s son was ready to deploy to Iraq. She realized the Army did not issue pillows to soldiers. Instead, the troops usually use rolled up clothing or backpacks as pillows. What originally began as a personal project to provide pillows for her son and his unit, expanded into providing pillows for many more troops getting ready to or already deployed.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, all the troops have is what they can carry in their backpacks which gives them little no space for comfort items.

Barbara enlisted the help of John and Patrick Harris of Harris Pillow Supply in Beaufort, SC. They generously donated quality, durable pillows to the initial project, and agreed to manufacture future pillows at their cost.

The pillows are 12” X 16”, have blue ticking for covers, can be folded or rolled for packing, and are washable with a soft polyester stuffing. They are very nice–packable, cozy and washable.

Pillows for Patriots can distribute pillows to our combat troops already in Afghanistan and Iraq, or to units just being deployed. The most cost-effective method is to ship them to the military bases in the US, JUST PRIOR TO DEPLOYMENT. Pillows are shipped in units of 25 per box.

Thousands of pillows have been sent to troops either already in combat zones or on their way to combat zones due to the generous support of enthusiastic and generous fellow Americans.

If you have family members or friends who are deployed overseas, you can let Pillows for Patriots know the names and addresses, and according to the donations they receive, they will send a pillow to each of them.

If you would like to donate money or help as a volunteer, please visit Pillows for Patriots for more information.

http://www.pillowsforpatriots.org

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kiowa rocketIt’s been four weeks since my son was deployed to Afghanistan. We are fortunate to chat with him frequently at random times of the day and night with Skype. His Internet connection is poor but better than none at all.

He was excited to receive the Christmas tree I sent via Operation Christmas Tree, a nice way to bring a little bit of “home” to Afghanistan.

He received just one of my 4 packages, the others are MIA for now. It’s not the money that bothers me but I wanted my son to have a few things to make life a little more comfortable in his B-Hut.

I stay busy as much as possible, with busy thoughts racing through my mind like thousands of trains. When they stop, a sadness engulfs my soul and I take a moment to embrace it. Then I pick myself up and find strength in the fact that this career is my son’s choice. He is being true to himself and following his passion in life. He is doing exactly what he always wanted to do – helicopter pilot!  How many people can say that? Not many that I know!

It’s not gotten any easier for me but I have learned a few things (not in any particular order).

  • There is an amazing, inspiring, and supportive community of Military families that I have come to know. I thank you and salute you all.
  • Life for those of us here at home must go on.
  • My son is a well-trained and confident man.
  • Taking care of myself by eating right and exercising contributes to staying physically and mentally healthy.
  • Accept the fact that my son is trained to shoot big guns.
  • Helping others is the best medicine.
  • Strength takes work.
  • Staying strong and confident for my son helps him more then any package I can send.
  • Being an Army Mom is a tough job and I am honored to take it on.

My friend Juanita shared this prayer with me. Her husband serves side-by-side with my son in Afghanistan – both are pilots. We were all together at the Army Airfield to say goodbye on the day they left for Afghanistan.

“Lord, as he makes his way through his days and through his nights, please let his guardian angel protect his flight.”

I’ve taken to saying this heartfelt prayer daily as my son takes flight daily and sometimes into the night in Afghanistan.

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Military FamilyMy child, you glow in uniform
In pride I live, my heart so warm

I have such precious thoughts cascade
Some old, some new, not one will fade

How hard that day we said good-bye
The joy, the pain, etched in my eye

You left to serve our country well
My perfect one, my tears did swell

No better soldier could there be
For in my love, that’s all I see

Oh how I pray for you each day
Be safe, be well, God guide your way

I keep your home in wait with me
Your Mom will guard it faithfully

How great the day when you’ll return
We’ll talk and talk, night-lights to burn

My Soldier’s Mom, is who I am
While you do proud, for Uncle Sam

by Roger J. Robicheau
Veteran, US Army

For more poems about “Our Wonderful Military Mothers”, click here to visit Roger’s Poem page.

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tracy2When Tracy’s son was deployed to Iraq with his U.S. Army unit, she went through a difficult time. Tracy looked for a local support group but found very little. She took matters into her own hands and Military Moms of Texas was born!

Tracy started the Military Moms of  Texas group for military families, friends, and locals to connect, volunteer, and support our troops and their families from right in Texas.

Military Moms of Texas also helps to welcome home or send off our troops, assist the wounded warriors, assist in deployment, and tend to the needs of our soldiers.

With the holidays approaching, Tracy wanted to make sure that deployed troops got many things they need. She also wanted to help make this time a little easier for the loved ones left behind. Military Moms of Texas sent out packages for the troops with presents and even sent Christmas trees. Her organization has adopted 20 soldiers to support, encourage, and continue to send things they need.

Help Tracy get the word out about Military Moms of Texas. Click here to visit their Facebook page and join in this rewarding experience. There you will also find  information about upcoming events including support groups and other activities. Join local families and their troops that share the toughest and proudest bond of all.

Stay tuned for information about the Military Moms of Texas Web site, launching early next year as a donation to the group.

Military Moms of Texas Facebook page

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army mom strong tshirtNow available! Army Mom Strong t-shirts and other gear! We are also pleased to announce that 50% of all proceeds go to Fisher House Foundation.

Fisher House™ Foundation donates “comfort homes,” built on the grounds of major military and VA medical centers. These homes enable family members to be close to a loved one at the most stressful times – during the hospitalization for an unexpected illness, disease, or injury.

Show that you are a proud and Army Mom Strong and get your t-shirt today! The tag line is: Army Mom Strong, we’re all in this together.

You can also purchase Army Mom Strong mugs, magnets, and stickers!

Army Kid Strong tshirtWe are also pleased to announce “Army Kid Strong” apparel. Again, 50% of the proceeds from ALL sales to Fisher House!

Army Kid Strong apparel is perfect for kids with a deployed parent.You can purchase t-shirts, onesies, sweatshirts, and bibs! The tag line is Army Kid Strong, my daddy’s got your back (my mommy’s got your back).

We’ll be adding lots of new stuff over the coming weeks!

Click here to visit the official Army Mom Strong store! Remember, 50% of ALL proceeds goes directly to Fisher House!

Thank you!

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helicopter pilotArmy Moms have a few things in common: we are all proud of our soldier children and concerned for their safety. Army Moms worry. We cry. We laugh. We listen to and support each other when needed. We live our daily lives always wondering if our deployed or soon-to-be deployed sons and daughters are safe. We pray.

I talked to my son today. He will be deployed in two weeks. It’s my turn to fear the unknown. So many Army Moms have been there to help me stay strong. But this time, I went to my son and asked him for his advice. What would he say to a concerned Army Mom of a deployed soldier?

He told me this: “Tell them that the United States has the most well trained Army in the world. We are professionals, all highly trained to do our jobs. Our Military is second to none. We are confident and excel at our jobs. Tell them to have faith and confidence in what we do.”

My son helped me be a little stronger today.

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proud mom of an american soldier

Author: unknown

I give my complete and unwavering support to my soldier. As my son serves the people of the United States, so I humbly offer up my prayers for his safety and the safety and health of those he serves beside.

I respect his choice to adhere to a strict moral code and system of values that has preserved our great country for over two centuries. I accept that my soldier’s first duty is to his country and I understand that this sacrifice he willingly makes is what keeps our nation great.

I will never expect anything but the best from my soldier for I know he is capable. I know that a soldier’s heart is true and strong, and that my soldier will endure.

I will never abandon my soldier, my son, my love. I will love him unconditionally. he will know I am there for him, even when he is alone.

I am disciplined, emotionally and mentally tough, learning to wait for phone calls and letters or emails home. I, like my soldier, am an expert.

I stand ready to do what ever I can do to let my son, my soldier, know that we are here for him beside him, we love him and I will pray for swift destruction of the enemies of our country. I am the person who stood guardian of this man who has become my soldier, now our guardian of freedom and the American way of life.

“I AM THE MOTHER OF AN AMERICAN SOLDIER.”

If you know someone who will benefit from reading this, pass it on :)

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