Email from folks responding to www.AnySoldier.US
The first 100

Note: This is a sampling of the email sent to me about AnySoldier.US.
I've taken the liberty to delete last names and some parts of email to protect identity.

Sat 11/22/2003 8:32 PM
Thank you for this wonderful opportunity. It's very difficult sending packages to our troops when you don't have someone in the service. I did donate through a couple of organizations the past year but problems arose with them and the names were no longer available for support. I took a chance to look again and am so happy I did. It is a special priviledge to honor and support our troops. My children are very excited and are now counting their allowance money to put together a package of their own. Thank you again for making it all possible.

The Nalleys (Texas)

Sat 11/22/2003 5:13 PM
Dear Sir,

What an amazing project you and your son have started! It breaks my heart to see the conditions our brave soldiers have to live in. I recently 'adopted' a soldier from Operation AC. It seems like only yesterday when we worried about the desert heat; now our guys are faced with the desert in winter.

I would like to order a bunch of those Space emergency blankets to send to SGT Horn, and also to my Operation AC soldier. These blankets are a great price! But I'm worried about the silver color. Are they safe for the men to have? Or will the silver reflective material make them easier to spot? I will await your advice. Meanwhile, I'll spread the word about your website. I'm also encouraging family and co-workers to send donations in lieu of Christmas gifts this year. The dramatic photograghs on your website are an excellent reminder that there are many who need our support this winter, more than any of us back home need a new sweater or gadget!


Sat 11/22/2003 7:29 AM
I found your site through the “Operation Hero Miles” Site. I am passing it along to everyone I know.

Our son was one of the first in after the Kobar Towers bombing. He was a firefighter in the USAF and went in to help set up the Prince Sultan Air Base. There was nothing there but the runway, so they needed lots of things too. It got to be kind of expensive, but we always sent enough for him to share with the others.

We will see what we can get together and send to our troops.

Thanks Again

Fri 11/21/2003 8:43 PM
I must tell you, that it is a pleasure to be able to speak with you. My Mom, Gloria, referred me to your website a few months ago when (my brother) Matt was deployed. I went in search of ideas of items to send for a package and ended up sending a card to your son addressed "any soldier". Last night, when I got home I had a letter in my mailbox from the soldier he had given it to. I immediately wrote a two page letter back to the soldier, Jesse. I feel as though something as a simple as a letter from home is the least I can do to try and lift the spirits of what I like to call "my hero's". I have passed the site address on to friends and a local church that have asked me for guidance on how they can help support our troops.

Tue 11/18/2003 3:36 PM
Thank you for doing the AnySolider mailing campaign. I just love it, and have been spreading the word over here.

Just wanted to share with you a wonderful website: This website allows you to click on 'send to troops' and the entire shopping basket gets sent over. An entire order, no matter how large, is sent for under 3 bucks.

Better yet, I sent over 5 magazine subscriptions for about 20 bucks. No tax, no mailing fee. Now you can't beat that.

Yes, some of the magazines that are great for guys (and sooo inexpensive on this website) are Razor, Maxim, Stuff Magazine, Blender, and Vibe. They make for light reading, show a bit of skin, and remind guys of the great Ole U.S. of A. And that can't be bad!!

Just want to thank you from the heart so all you and your son are doing.

God bless you,

(Note from Marty...I did have a link to, but removed it. It is back on...)

Tue 11/18/2003 3:36 PM
Good luck. I sent a note out to everyone in my address which is 200+ and already got a ton of positive responses.

Tue 11/18/2003 3:12 PM
Hi, Marty-

Just wanted you to know we heard you on the radio last night with John Hancock. We're glad you're promoting this cause so well...our soldiers are lucky to have you!

We haven't heard from Megan, our soldier, in a few weeks, but we continue to send her care packages and magazines.


Mon 11/17/2003 8:06 PM
Hi Marty:
We are a military family-my husband is a Marine-and I can't wait to get my three sons started on our holiday care packages to send to Brian and his unit! Thanks for all the great info on your website. Just wanted to pat you on the back and tell you thank you for your service and to declare you a good American! By the way, your son and all of our soldiers are heroes in my book! Sincerely, Elizabeth Whetstone and Family! P.S. My Brian has already done 2 tours in Baghdad and will be returning on an undisclosed date. We will continue to pray for everyone over there!
Brian and Elizabeth

Mon 11/17/2003 6:42 PM
Dear Marty,

Thanks for getting back to us quickly. Today we completed our first ten care packages to be sent to Brian tomorrow. We followed the directions on your website and included recommended items. We are so pleased to be involved in such a wonderful endeavor.

I must go out of town this week, but intend to do another 10 packages when I return on Nov. 25th. At that time we will include Christmas cards and little table decorations along with the other items. We will pray that they get there by Christmas.

If we are able to do more than 10 packages, we certainly will. The packages we are sending out tomorrow cost about $20-25 each. We are trying to get some donated items, and will buy in bulk next time (individually wrapped items, of course) so that we can afford to send more packages.

God Bless your Son and you for giving us this opportunity to do something meaningful for our soldiers. We pray that Brian and all of our soldiers return home safely.

Best regards,
Ann and Robert

Mon 11/17/2003 6:10 PM
HI - just a note to let you know that I heard you on the John Hancock show tonight - I had no idea that you were doing the boxes for the soldiers as I do not normally listen to the radio at night. I have been on the website and am planning on getting my family involved.

I wanted to let you know that we are so thankful for everything your son and the other soldiers are doing. I have a son at North Meck High School who is in Junior ROTC and he desperately wants to join the military some day. I certainly hope that if he does, people will be there to help support him and his fellow soldiers.

I am planning on getting my family together on Thanksgiving day to put together "Thank you " boxes for these soldiers - this is exactly the type of project that my family needs to do to teach our very fortunate children just how lucky they are!! Thank you so much for doing this - I truly believe it will make a difference with our family not only for this Thanksgiving but also the Christmas holiday as we will plan on continuing to send the boxes throughout the holiday season and beyond.

Take care.

Mon 11/17/2003 4:02 PM
Dear Marty,
I wanted to let you know that we at Cottingham-Chalk & Assoc. Realtors are in the process of sending about 30 or more care boxes to Brian for distribution to those soldiers who need them most. Please let me know if there is a deadline for Christmas deliveries and if there is anything special we can send to make life a little better for our troops. Thanks for your efforts, please let me know. Thanks! Scott

Mon 11/17/2003 10:52 AM
Dear Marty,

I just sent 2 oversized packages stuffed with things on your list. I got carried away and sent a lot...and by the time I figured out about the size, it was too late to pare them down to 6 lbs, but next time we will do better....somebody over there is going to have lots to eat and play with.

Thank you for your and your son's service to our country. My dad was in both WWI and WWII so as an army kid, I want to do what I can to help. You are great.

I am getting others to join in too. The shipping clerk even gave me a discount when he found out where the stuff was going.


Sat 11/15/2003 3:49 PM
Hi Marty!!!
My name is Heather and I am apart of a group called Twisted to Xtreme. ( We are a sportbike bike group located in the Jacksonville, FL area.
As you may or may not know, we have a large military presence here in Jacksonville which is primarily Navy. We were interested in helping your son and his cause. The group has already collected several items from our even larger sportbike community!!! Please let me know what you need specifically if there is a time deadline in this, and what we can do to help you out!!!

Fri 11/14/2003 8:37 PM
Hello Marty,

We just spent the evening preparing packages for the troops. We went to Radio Shack and bought four of the 2 way Radios you suggested. I wanted to let you know the rebate is not advertised. You must ask the sales clerks for the rebate specifically. You may want to post that info on the web for others. In addition she took the information on the web site and was going to ask the employees of Radio Shack to send a radio I hope she follows through. We have sent batteries, life savers, tuna fish, mayo, crackers, granolas bars, oatmeal, pens, note paper, Oreos, Pringles etc. I hope we made some good choices. Again, thanks for your dedication.


Fri 11/14/2003 7:30 PM
Dear Mr Horn, SFC Horn !

First of all, it is a great webside and wonderfull what you and your son are doing for the soldiers who are deployed. Thank you so much for what you are doing !!!!!!

My name is Sonja and I am married to an Army soldier myself, we are stationed in Kaiserslautern Germany. I found this webside through the . I donated tonight 12000 frequent flyer miles for our troops who are on R&R leave. So that they can get home to their loved ones without paying any ticket. Here at the KMC ( Kaiserslautern Military Comunity ) are alot of soldiers who just came from Iraq and try to get home on leave.

My husband was deployed too and probably will be again pretty soon. He told me how it was down there and how they really slept, ate etc. Not like you see it on TV. I hope my husband and I can bring a smile and a good feeling to one of the soldiers.

Again , thank you what you are doing. It makes a difference !!!!!

I will send a box Monday and I hope it will get their pretty quick.


Fri 11/14/2003 7:30 PM
Tonight I got together with the local ladies auxiliary and we assembled 37 Christmas care packages. They will be on their way tomorrow to your son. Also, the website is up now. It's ........thank you and God Bless, Terri

Thu 11/13/2003 7:05 PM
Dear Brian's Dad,

Thank you for providing this site. I was on line looking for a way to send something to our soldiers overseas and I was happy to find a site with helpful information about where and what to send.

I've told my family members about the site and that I'm planning on sending packages via Brian in lieu of holiday gifts to the adults on my list this year. They think it's great idea and are planning on doing the same. I'm proud of our troops and am thrilled that you have provided me with a way to show a little support.

take care,

Wed 11/12/2003 6:57 PM
SFC Horn,
When I sent a package to a soldier I felt really good. His name is Corey. He is a really good artist. He drow me a picture of a skater girl it was really good. He also gave me some Iraqian money. We have been writing back and forth. He seems really nice.

Liz (12 years old)

(Note from Marty...In case anybody freaks out about a 12 year old and a soldier...Liz is a daughter in an Army family who has been helping the AnySoldier effort.)

Wed 11/12/2003 10:34 AM
Dear Marty,
I have been looking for a way to support our troops and your site is it. I would love to send items to our military and now have a way to do so. I wanted to thank you and your son for making it possible for people like me to help. Especially now with the holidays coming up they need all the support we can give them.

Thank You,
Sara (FL)

Wed 11/12/2003 7:38 AM
We would like to contribute in some way but I would like to ask a question of you first. How do you guarantee that the same soldier does not receive multiple packages and another soldier gets none? I personally would like to make sure that any gifts are widespread and not confined to one unit. Does Brian disperse any overages to other units?

Thanks very much.

(Note from Marty...My reply:
Excellent question.
Honestly, there are NO guarantees with this. It is a war zone, Brian is an Infantry Soldier who is volunteering his extreemly limited time, and the entire effort depends on volunteers.
This started as a very small effort, but is growing quickly. Far faster then we thought, there are more folks supportive of the soldiers then the TV might make you believe. Because of this Brian has been in contact with his chain of command to get support there for this. For example, within the next few days I know he is about to be bombarded with about 400 boxes (that I know of). We are working on a broader dispersal of this amount of support. The worst thing is that something will be wasted when there are soldiers (and plenty of them) that need this stuff.
So, the honest answer is we are working this issue, but I can not guarantee you anything. We are doing our best. Stephanie, if this is not a satisfactory answer for you, please take a look at the other efforts I put on the bottom of the AnySoldier page.
We are not affiliated in ANY way, I did list them because I know our effort is not perfect and you may like another better.
What counts, is that you do something.
It's all about support.

Hope this helps. Sorry I can't do better. I offered to go to Iraq and help my son but he just laughs and my wife just frowns.......

My best to you,

Tue 11/11/2003 9:05 AM

I reviewed your website and am both touched and impressed by the efforts you and Brian have put into making the lives of our soldiers a little better under extremely trying circumstances.

I am pleased to make a special offer for anyone purchasing HeaterMeals entrees to be included in care packages to AnySoldier. Our normal price for HeaterMeals entrees ordered through our website is $3.99 per meal, plus delivery (usually averages total of $4.75 - $5.25 per meal after shipping). I will drop the meal price to $3.35 to anyone ordering who references the "AnySoldier" program. Shipping will continue to be an additional charge.

If you'd like to put this information on your website that would be great. Anyone interested should contact us at 800-503-4483 and ask for the sales department.

In addition, I will be sending a care package of meals to the APO on your website as a donation from our company.

I've sent your link to everyone in my address book in hopes that they will make donations or their companies can extend a special offer.

Congratulations on a tremendous effort to support our troops.

God Bless you, Brian and America.

Tim Hartlage
Sales Manager
800-589-1528 (fax)

(Note from Marty...How absolutely perfect is this?!! Send troops in the middle of nowhere the ability to have a hot meal at a VERY good price!!!)

Mon 11/10/2003 4:10 PM
Dear Marty, I am a First Grade teacher at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Shrub Oak, New York. I came upon your site this weekend when I was looking for a place to send Holiday wishes to our troops overseas. It would be wonderful to have the children do something for Brian so I have asked each child to bring in some of the things on the list. I have 28 in my class so we should be able to collect quite a few items. I hope to get the boxes off to the APO address shortly. I will also include Christmas cards made by the children. Making a difference in this world is not hard to do. I explained to them that they will not see that smile on a soldier's face but just knowing they made it happen will be enough. God bless you and your son. You for what you've done to preserve our freedom and Brian for what he is doing now. Sincerely, Mrs. Van Riper

Mon 11/10/2003 3:38 PM
I have four boxes almost ready to mail! My two kids have had so much fun packing their boxes and have been so generous sharing Halloween candy. How long will it take for a soldier to receive a box? Thanks! Julie

Mon 11/10/2003 3:03 PM
Hello Marty,

I would like to send some letters on behalf of my co-workers and I to soldiers in Iraq who don't receive much mail, however, I have a few questions:

-Approximately how long will it take for the letters to be received if they are sent by November 14th? -Have the anthrax scares prevented any letters from being delivered?

Thank you in advance, Renee

(Note from Marty...Brian told us he is getting packages from Maryland in 6-10 days. I think that RPGs are more a threat to the soldiers than anthrax letters.)

Mon 11/10/2003 1:37 PM
Dear Brian's Dad,

I am in the process of organizing an effort within my office, Cottingham-Chalk & Assoc. Realtors, to send as many packages to our soldiers in Iraq as we can. Please give me any advise re: best mailing options, seasonal items, and what not to send that you think may be helpful. I am hoping to have about 30 to 35 boxes on their way within the next week or so. Also, let me know what the deadline is for receiving care packages before Christmas. FYI I learned of your wonderful efforts through listening to the WBT radio show, Spires & Krantz, and although they are no longer with WBT I wanted you to know their work continues.
Thank you for your great work on behalf of the troops, we're with you 100%!!!


Mon 11/10/2003 12:09 PM
Good afternoon, Marty.

Thought that I would forward to you some of the pictures that were taken of the items that we collected. We were able to fill 308 boxes and plan to ship those out today! (We have additional toiletries left over, but plan to send those when we accumulate more food items.)

Hope you are doing well!

Best regards,

(Note from Marty...WOW!!!!!)

Mon 11/10/2003 7:59 AM
Thanks! I will be online today and post a message or two.

I have to tell you this about your "Any Soldier" program. My youngest son is a Junior in High School. He writes for the school newspaper and wrote an article that was published in the September edition. It was titled, "Students worry about family in the Middle East". He interviewed fellow students who have family members deployed to Iraq. In the middle of the article there is a highlighted box of information with recommended care package items and the address of your son, Sgt Brian Horn, Attn: ANY SOLDIER.

I have also shared your son's address and the "Any Soldier" program with friends and co-workers. I just wanted to let you know that your message is being spread.


Mon 11/10/2003 1:43 AM
Dear Marty,

My name is Sandra and I am the Marketing Director at the South Hill Mall in Puyallup, WA. We would like to collect much needed supplies for the troops at the mall during the holiday season from shopper-we were thinking about asking shoppers to donate one of top for items that soldiers need.

We are however at a loss which those 4 top items are and how to get them to the soldiers given shipping costs to Iraq.

I am hoping that you can provide us with some viable ideas on how to make this happen.


(Note from Marty...I suggested a seperate collection for just shipping expenses. Folks may not have time to donate stuff but will help with money.)

Sat 11/8/2003 10:10 AM
I would like to correspond with a member of our armed forces in Iraq, any branch, male or female. I am 78 years old, widow of a retired military man--- Air Force. I understand how much mail means to them, especially when they are away from home. Please, let me know how I can do this.

Mary Jane

Fri 11/7/2003 7:32 PM
We went to the store and sent three packages. Tell Brian the Quinn's from Idaho will be sending some more. God Bless our Soldiers.

Fri 11/7/2003 1:56 PM
hi Marty,

Thanks so much for the information on your web site! I don't know anyone in the military so this is perfect for me to do something to help. I donated some air mileage but this is a little more personal. Love it!

I'm printing all of this information out and will be shipping a package out to your son Brian next week.

thanks very much,

Kelly (Washington)

Fri 11/7/2003 4:26 AM
hey marty

i have a question concerning writing to the guys out there. up to now my penpals are stationed on the carriers, but i'd love to write a short hello to the ones stationed in irak. it doesn't make too much sense to send a care package yet without being sure if they will get it. now back to my question. i live in zurich, switzerland. do you happen to know how i have to address the letter i want to send? (with or without the USA?) silly question, i know. but the mailing system lost the package i sent to one of my guys on the carrier and the rest i really don't want to start sending stuff without it even getting there... ;)

hope you can help me out and keep the spirit up. your family and the guys out there are in my prayers.

thank you
ursina (Switzerland)

(Note from Marty...Now, how cool is this??!)

Thu 11/6/2003 8:45 PM
Hi Marty,
My name is Betty, and I would like to get my grandchildren involved in this. I just wanted to hear again from you that this is a valid and worthy cause, before I tell them about it and get them excited. I am just a working mom/grandma, so I don't have a lot to spend, but I would like to thank these guys and gals for protecting my freedoms. I think it is wonderful to get this to someone who doesn't receive mail from home. I can't even imagine being there and not getting a package, a letter a postcard...something from home! How lonely that must be.
Please email me so I can get started with this ASAP. Thanks so much,

Thu 11/6/2003 8:31 PM
I was at dinner with my wife when I stopped to think of the X-Mas I spent in the bush in Nam. I'll be at the store in the morning to send a couple of packages. I just retired from the Police Dept here and I'm going to hit the street to see how many more people I can get to send those kid's something.Keep up the great work.

Wed 11/5/2003 9:01 PM
Hi Marty, I am a Brownie Girl Scout leader in Mason, OH and have come across your website. Out troop wanted to focus on "THE" troops with Veterans Day approaching and a new Veterans memorial being dedicated in our town this week. We will be sending boxes, including packages of Girl Scout Cookies. Do you have a looming deadling that we should meet to get things to the soldiers by Christmas? Or just ASAP..........


(Note from Marty...Girl Scout cookies! Soldiers are gonna love you guys!! Sending ASAP is the best answer.)

Wed 11/5/2003 9:01 PM
I wrote to you recently concerning operation anysoldier. I am very happy to say that after two newspaper articles and a radio interview that we will be collecting our donations and sending them out to your son in the next couple of weeks. I will have a website up and running soon. It will be I am excited to be able to help.
I have had a few people contact me and tell me they would like to "adopt a soldier" (especially for the holidays). Could your son provide me with names and addresses of 3 or 4 soldiers or would it be easier to send directly to him?
I just spoke with my son (from Mosul) and he tells me it is getting cooler at night. He said the temp had dropped to around 40. Right now he is guarding at the airfield and will go back on the pipeline on Sunday for 2 weeks. Thank you ..

(Note from Marty...Excellent!!! Anxious to see your site! As for names, sorry, we won't give out any soldier's names except for Brian's:
1. Because I don't have any names, because
2. We don't wish to advertise the name of a lonely or unsupported solder, because
3. We don't wish to embarrass the soldier, or their family who may not be supporting their soldier, and
4. It's just not how we want to do this, sorry.)

Wed 11/5/2003 8:01 PM

Thanks for your quick response! This is the least we can do for those who are giving so much. It's very therapeutic for us and worth every penny! We will pass the word along as well. I love the website! Very informative. I noticed it was updated today. Keep up the good work. Looks great!! God Bless! Heather

Wed 11/5/2003 4:45 PM

After seeing your website yesterday I went today and bought a few things for one soldier.
I tried to get one of everything on the personal hygiene and food lists. The problem is it is enough to fill a laundry basket and weighs approx. 30 lbs. Should I break it into several boxes (and if so, how do I label it) or just ship it all together? Also, aren't the two way radios a security issue as they are open channels? What do the guys (and gals) do with them?


(Note from Marty...Yes, I suggest smaller boxes, label all the same. The soldiers will divide the contents as they need. As for the radios, I suggest you ask them!)

Wed 11/5/2003 12:44 PM
Hi Marty, I'm Melissa. I'm also the mother of four, and I'm feeling a little useless to help these boys just now. I've sent a lot of candy, my kids sent some of the Halloween booty, and some letters, but I'd like to send something more helpful. I don't have a whole lot of $$, but I'm about as handy as it gets with a sewing machine. Are there any color/pattern requirements for blankets? Obviously day-glo orange would be a poor choice, but If I sent a tan quilt or throw, or some other color, would that be alright? Do they already have long johns? Not that I'd sew those (Lord Forbid), but I want to contribute to more than just their poor dental health.


Wed 11/5/2003 7:49 AM
I am a teacher in Callao, Mo. and would like to have my students put together Christmas care packages for our soldiers. Can you help me with information on how to send them. If the kids could get a response back after Christmas, they would be very excited! I am a Desert Storm Vet. and the letters we received from students were very special to us. We received ours on New Years Day. I would appreciate any help you could give me.


Mon 11/3/2003 1:56 PM
Just wanted to ask your opinion. I was going to ask my daughters 3rd &/or 6th grade class to have a "holiday project" and make cards & donations for these guys. What do you think? Think they will like a bunch of well wishes from the smallest of supporters? :)

I only wish I could do more to help and if you have any suggestions please let me know.

Thank you so very much,

(Note from Marty...The soldiers really love the letters and drawings from the kids!)

Mon 11/3/2003 8:09 AM
Hi There,
My name is Heidi and I live in North Carolina. I am 21 years of age and letter writing is a past time of mine.My best friends husband is in the Marines and she sent me this site about why we should write and send things to our boys over seas. I am very much interested in sending someone letters, care packages, etc. Its the least I can do when they do so much for my country. Let me know of someone who might like a letter or 2 sometime. Thanks, Heidi

(Note from Marty...Hmmm, let me think...wonder if a bunch of soldiers would like to hear from a 21 year old named Heidi...)

Wed 10/29/2003 7:58 PM
My daughter in law close to d.c. sent me the info about was thrilled. have 2 boxes ready to send. also copying this info and and posting it. support is being seen not only in our churches where my husbend pastors but also others. Our son is in the army and has been overseas. I n which i baked cookies and fudge for so many there. they wouldnt let our son have his packages till he promised them the cookies. ha ha I realize we cannot send homeade things now. But we can help our soldiers in lots of other ways. one is threw prayer,,, god is still in control. So tell your son to hang on,,, we got them comming. GOD BLESS ALL OF YOU AND YOUR EFFORTS,,,,,,Together we can make a difference. Kindest Reguards,,, Earl and Diana

Tue 10/28/2003 6:11 PM
My neighbor shared this website with me, and I want to help! I was a first year teacher during Operation Desert Storm, and my class "adopted" some soldiers. Two of them even came to the class to visit! Should I include my name and address in the goody box? Is it okay to share this info with my daughter's fourth grade teacher? Maybe her class would be interested in sending things over. Thanks for your help!


(Note from Marty...Julie, I hope you see this, I answered your email but your filter bounced me. Yes, put your address in the box as it will increase your chances of an answer from the soldier who gets it. Yes, tell the school! The soldiers have been very receptive to letters from kids.)

Tue 10/28/2003 1:28 PM
Thank you so much for the website www.AnySoldier.US. I, like many others, have wanted to help our soldiers in some way, but honestly have not known what items are needed or how to go about getting packages to those that need them.

It is admirable of your son to not only make personal sacrifices in support of our country, but to also take his time and energy to distribute packages to the many soldiers that are doing without. They are fortunate to have him as their Sergeant and we are fortunate to have individuals like him protecting the people of this nation, and others, by serving in our military.

In that regard, the paralegals of KMZRosenman, Charlotte, are coordinating with the attorneys and staff of our office to collect items for individual packages. We hope to put together numerous packages to send for the upcoming holidays. I do have a few questions, though, and would like to speak with you personally. If you have a few minutes, please contact me at the number below.

I look foward to speaking with you soon.

Best regards,

Tue 10/28/2003 10:41 AM
I passed the website info to a co-worker who passed it to her daughter's private school. She is hoping to get the school involved for the holidays since they are also involved with Operation Shoebox. Keep your fingers crossed!
PS : Sent a box today!

Tue 10/28/2003 7:23 AM
I'm sorry for the impersonal salutation, but I'm not sure to whom I should address this letter.
I would be more than happy to promote your web site on mine. Since 1994 RICHARD R. GIDEON FLAGS has been making custom reproductions of historic flags, and has an international reputation in the field of vexillology. We are also a DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE licensed manufacturer of the National Service Flag (see on our web site). Not only have we supplied these flags to families, but we have made Service Flags for the USO, the US Army, and made the special Sullivans Service Flag for the Navy's USS THE SULLIVANS. We also supply the regulation Service Button (in its correct size), and special USA/NSF lapel pin for which we were given a special variance to make. We are listed on the Army's THE INSTITUTE OF HERALDRY web site (TIOH is the licensing arm for the Department of Defense).
Upon your approval the link will be established within 24 hours.
Richard R. Gideon, Professional Vexillologist (Viet Nam Era veteran, USAF)

Mon 10/27/2003 4:19 PM
Marty this may seem like a crazy question but.......since Brian is in an Airborne unit I was curious if there were any females in his unit? I am putting together 2 "care packages" and if there are any females in his unit I am going to send one to a female and one to a male. Please let me know so that I can get them in the mail. If you talk to Brian tell him that he and all soldiers in Iraq are continually in my thoughts and prayers.
Thanks Traci

(Note from Marty...Not a crazy question at all! YES, there ARE female soldiers there that need your help and support also! Please, build a package for a female soldier and address it "ATTN: Any Female Soldier".)

Sun 10/26/2003 8:37 PM
O.K. It's Wayne again with the K of C #10615 Monroe N.C. Just letting you know we raised over $200. to fund the shipping on our Any Soldier prodject. We expect to get a lot of supplys and goods donated to us next Sunday at Mass and we'll get them in the mail soon after. The responce has been great from the whole Church as well as Blessed Sacrament Academy,(my kids school). I hope to send 30 boxes or better ,but i'll let you know.
Thanks, Wayne

Sun 10/26/2003 4:18 AM
Hello Marty,

I heard about your site on WBT, since several of our customers are in Iraq, we thought by adding your site link that it would be one of several ways to show our support for the folks in the Armed Forces.

Thank You for your efforts.

Tom Martin
Vexillologist Flagmaker

Sat 10/25/2003 9:03 PM
Hi Marty! How could I not put a link to your site on OSOT's? What you and your son are doing is wonderful! During the Gulf War we were able to address envelopes to Any Soldier and the APO delivered them. This time around we can't so your website fills a great void. I've referred several people to your website when they email me looking for a "pen pal".

My oldest son is with the 41st En Bn of the 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan. I was telling him what you and your son are doing and he said "Mom, we can do the same thing for soldiers in Afghanistan!" See what you guys started!!

Thank you so much for putting a link to OSOT's website on yours. It is much appreciated.

We are a group of about 6,000 people in the State of Washington who have held rallies almost every Saturday since January 15 to show our troops the love and respect that this nation has for them.

I don't know if you saw on our website our latest project called "Operation Holidays From Home". We have addresses for units in Iraq and Afghanistan that we will be sending "Christmas in a Box" to. We are including small (2-foot) artificial Christmas Trees with all the tree trimmings. Christmas stockings filled with goodies with the name "Hero" on them. We are purchasing various games, jigsaw puzzles, etc. for their Rec. Centers to help keep them entertained. We are having a ball with this project and it is turning out even more successful than I had hoped. Area business are contributing items and money as well as individuals. We are having a "work party" with hundreds of volunteers showing up to help stuff the stockings and fill the boxes. It makes all of us feel like we are doing something positive. The local media is giving this project good coverage on T.V., radio and the newspapers. It is really awesome.

Our youngest son joined the Army this year and is still in training at Ft. Sam Houston, TX. He is training to be a medic. Neither of my sons will be home for Christmas this year. First time ever my husband and I will celebrate without one of our sons here. They can't be with us but we decided we sure could be with them and thus the "Operation Holidays From Home" came to be.

Again, thank you for what you guys are doing. It takes all of us to let our Troops know how much we appreciate what they do for our country. Please express to your son my personal thank you and heartfelt gratitude for his service to our country!


Fri 10/24/2003 10:52 AM
Hi Marty,
I just want to let you know that I mailed two packages about two weeks ago to Brian for Any Soldier and plan to send another in a week or so. What a great thing you are doing, and I thank you very much! I have no family/friends in the military so this is an excellent way for me to show my support. Thanks again!

Some things I sent:

eye drops
bubble gum
all types of hard candies
AA batteries
lots of wipies (including the big bathing kind used in hospitals)
small packs of Kleenex
shower-to-shower powder
antibacterial lotion
band aids
cough drops
toothpaste & brushes
beef jerky and slim jims
single serving canned foods
crackers and cookies
canned nuts
cereal bars
paperback book
lip balm


Thu 10/23/2003 4:00 PM
Thanks Marty for all that you are doing for our troops! My Daddy and Grand dad were military too.. Daddy was in Vietnam and Grandpa was in Korea.. and I have heard them talk about how it was while they were over there and the lack of support they had.. I do not want that to happen here with these guys/gals that are over in Iraq now.

Also, thanks for answering my questions that I had.. I felt kinda goofy having to ask them, but how do you know the answers if you don't ask the questions?

I am passing the link to your website around to my friends and I have one friend that I know is gonna write.. she was as disturbed as I was in knowing that there are soldiers over there that may not be getting any mail. That is just horrible! They are over there risking their lives so that we can live ours..

God Bless,

<>< Lori <><

Thu 10/23/2003 10:24 AM
Thank you for taking on this project. I am going to bring it up to committee to do a project for our Cub Scouts Pack.

Do you want breakfast cereal? Like Chexs or that type of dry cereal? Can they have instant oatmeal? Will they be able to get the water for it? Do you need phone cards? Thanks so much for your time.

Chasity (Iowa)

(Note from Marty...Not sure about the dry cereal, I'm guessing milk is a bit hard to get. The instant oatmeal may be a good idea. The phone cards are not as needed as before as they can use govt satellite phones if they can get to them, but a few phone cards may be helpful. I'll check on these items and add to the list if needed.)

Wed 10/22/2003 11:07 PM
Hi Marty -

Wanted to let you know that my family did sent 10 packages on Oct. 6 and was probably part of the bunch that Brian received on Oct. 13. We have already received a Thank You note from a SSG M. and will be writing him back with another box of goodies. The letter was not expected, but it was great to know that our packages arrived!

Thanks again for your time and efforts so that we can help our soldiers.


Tue 10/21/2003 3:23 PM
Hi Marty,
My name is Allyson. I have a son in the 2-503rd. I just wanted to let you know that a package went in the mail today to Brian for Any Soldier. I try to send James, my son, packages on a regular basis in the hopes that it will give him a little pick me up. I can tell from his voice when he receives one that it does just that, if only for a short while. I hope that in some small way my package does that for one of Brian's soldiers. Thank you so much for giving me a way to show my appreciation for what these guys are doing. God Bless our Soldiers!

Sat 10/18/2003 11:36 AM
Dear Sir, The information about the conditions of our soldiers in Iraq was forwarded to me by a friend. It is devastating to hear of these conditions.

Although I do not have much in the way of money, I am on disability, I have soap that I saved from my years of travel from motels rooms. I saved it not knowing what I was going to do with it. It sounds like this would be a good place to send it. I could afford the postage but I wouldn't want a soldier just getting little bars of soap. It would be great because they could use a bar and toss it.

Would you please let me know if you think this is an appropriate item and who to send it to? I would appreciate it. Please if you don't think it appropriate them let me know, my feelings will not be hurt. It is just that I would like to do more that just send a letter. I will do that to. Sincerely, Teresa

Sat 10/18/2003 9:34 AM
Hi Marty,
My son, Denny, who used to be in Germany with you, sent us the info about sending packages to Iraq about 6 weeks ago or so. Our "Bag Lunch Bible Study Group" will now sending packages every little while. We meet on Tuesdays and bring our lunch, thus the name. My husband, Don teaches the study.
We are so thankful for your son, Brian and all those who are willing to stand for freedom-- for us. It certainly doesn't look like they experience much freedom in accomplishing their work over in Iraq.
I have sent the info on to others who may be willing to help as well.
We pray for them and hope that they can feel God's presence in these tough times.
Thanks so much for giving us the opportunity to do what little we can to help.

Fri 10/17/2003 2:05 PM
Hi, Marty!

We heard back from one of our soldiers today! Spc. Megan P. sent us a letter and thanked us for our package. I wrote her another letter, and my husband and I are going to put another package together for her.

I'm so glad we heard about the soldier project you and your son support. I had a miscarriage this week, and Megan's letter really was a bright spot on an otherwise bad week.


Fri 10/17/2003 2:05 PM
Hi Marty,

My family would like to send some more care packages to "any soldier". They keep asking if they got the other 3 we sent, but , I have not heard anything. Do you suppose they did not get them? We spent about 300$, between the postage, and the contents. Which is not a problem, but hate to think that they did not get to your son.

Great pics, and stories on your site! I have been looking at them for about an hour now, and printed a few off, to show my family. Looks like a lot of people are sending stuff over there now too, good thing you have done here.

We went to Georgia, for my son's graduation. It was great, I will never forget it. He is so grown up now, I am finding it hard to let go. He leaves next week for Ft Carson.

Well get back to me when you can, and keep up the good work! Take care,

Debbie (North Dakota)

(Note from Marty...I am now getting email from folks saying that they are getting letters from the soldiers. Brian is also going to try to keep notes on what gets there and we will post that info on this web site.)

Fri 10/17/2003 9:50 AM
Because of your site, I've managed to get 3 packages sent to our troops, and yesterday received a thank you from one of them. I don't really expect that, but it's good to know the packages are received and appreciated. Keep up the good work.

Fri 10/17/2003 4:22 AM
Dear Sir,

Let me begin by saying how wonderful I think this entire effort is on you and your son's part. It's wonderful see how many people truly care about others. I have a question. I sent a couple of boxes and just received a letter from a young man in the 173rd. I would like to send more to him, should I still send it in your son's name with an attention to this young man or should I just send it directly to him?
Thank you for your help and everything that you are doing for our young men and women. May your son come home soon, safe and sound.

(Charlotte, NC)

(Note from Marty...How cool is this!!?? This is a completely voluntary effort. You should do whatever you wish, although I bet your new soldier friend would love to hear from you again...)

Thu 10/16/2003 5:43 PM
Hi, My name is Wayne and I'm trying to put together a lot of boxes to send the troops. I'm Catholic and I'm working through my Knights Of Columbus chapter and my kids school. The question thats come up is religious items and if on some of the boxes could be marked any Catholic soldier. We're not trying to single out one soldier from the next but some of the kids wanted to make Rosaries and soldiers that arn't Catholic wont have a lot of use for this. Please let me know what you think and if we should push forward with this part of what we're sending. thanks,Wayne

(Note from Marty...This is a VERY good idea! The only thing I can think of wrong with it is that I'm sorry I didn't list religious items!)

Thu 10/16/2003 5:01 PM

I hate to bother you but I just wanted to check on Brian's status. I know things must be pretty hectic over there, however I am hoping he has got it under control. It seems that people are more worried about the Cub Fan than they are about the troops in Iraq!
Wish Brian and your family well. As I stated before, we do appreciate what are Troops and Their Families are up against. Take Care, Toledo

(Note from Marty...Brian and a number of soldiers with him were in a very heavy fire fight in an effort to save a senior officer who was being attacked by RPG and machine gun fire less then one week ago. The officer is alive, though wounded. Nobody else, American, was hurt. No, it is not under control.)

Thu 10/16/2003 3:28 PM
Hello Marty,
Your email was sent to me by a friend of mine and it really touched my heart. I work in Community Relations for Williams in Tulsa, Oklahoma and decided to start a drive for these soldiers. Already, I have collected quite a few items from employees and will continue to do so until October 31. Just want to make sure the packages are sent before the holiday mail rush. Well, I just wanted to let you know that Williams supports our soldiers and we are honored to help!


Wed 10/15/2003 2:55 PM
Just saw your site here in NY
I'm a retired Army Lt.Col. and find what is being done is great.
I'll pass the site to my friends here in Westchester County, about 60 miles from NYC and I'm 25 miles from West Point.

Mon 10/6/2003 7:46 PM
Thank you so much for the letter, heard about it on WBT radio and wanted to take a look. I have a brother in the 101st Airborne that has been in Iraq since February. He has an enormous amount of support, I myself send him a box every week and will continue to do so until he returns home safely. My coworkers have been bringing in supplies to send and I send to him and he gives to those that have little or no mail, I can't even imagine having family going through this and not supporting them. Anyway thanks for getting the word out. This is his last year as he will be retiring with 20 years service on his return so keep us in your thoughts that he will make a safe return home to a family that supports and loves him, and we will do the same for your son. Thanks again, Janet

Mon 10/6/2003 4:41 PM
Your son is truly a remarkable person and should be commended for his thoughtfulness of other people. Just what he is doing for his country is unselfish enough. I am one of the lucky people to have recently had my daughters husband returned to us safe and sound from Iraq. I will be sending your son an any soldiers mail and package, I just wish it hadn't taken me so long to figure out how I could help.
Best wishes and we will all be praying for your son and the rest of the men to make a safe return to their loved ones.

Sat 10/4/2003 2:31 PM
I work at a large hospital and my friends are eager to help me. I am organizing something for the holidays my goal is that every soldier over there get a package from home. The any soldier is just perfect as I didn't know where to send pkgs. Etc I have been contacting media etc and no one has responded its so discouraging but now I found you and your son and I'm off!!! I'll keep you posted as to my progress and hopefully we can brighten the days of our soldiers.
TY Michele

Thu 10/2/2003 3:42 PM
Hello Marty,

I went out the other night and got enough for five CP's to send. The bill was getting high, and I had to find a way to be more of a help, without mortgaging my home! I could not even sleep that night I was brainstorming so hard trying to figure out a way to get more supplies to the men. Finally at o'dark thirty it hit me! WORK!! I work as a Project manager for a General Contractor, and our parent company is a local developer in Charlotte. I sent out a memo to the brass here and asked permission to start a drive for supplies. Our owner's assistant is an Air Force vet and she was all over it saying she would make sure he supported the effort.

One note: Our owner is a deeply religious man, among the contents in the CP's will no doubt be a Bible in each of them. Tell Brian that if it makes any of the men uncomfortable to receive them, that they please give it to a soldier who might find comfort in it. However, I guess if you look at yourself as an "RPG Magnet" there probably are not too many athiests among them.

As for me, I am honored that your son will fly my flag during this war. It is single handedly the most moving act any person has ever done for me, and I will always remember both him and you. It will be passed on to my son/daughter and they will learn what it means to honor your country as you and your son have done.

Well it was good to hear from you, and I will let you know about our success.

Thank you,

Wed 10/1/2003 8:23 PM
Dear Marty,

I think what you and your family are doing for these guys is absolutely wonderful. I work for a company called Private Eyes Investigations out of Gastonia, NC. My boss/father found your website the other day and printed it out. When I came to work, he showed me what he found and told me that I could put some together and send them over from the company. I thought that was wonderful!!! He suggested that I get my 4 y/o nephew and my 6 y/o niece to write letters for the boxes. I immediately made copies of the website and took them to my sister. She approached the teachers of my niece and nephew and asked if they would allow their classes to write letters and draw pictures for the boxes. The teachers were willing to do this and also see if the kids in the classes would send in any items that you have listed on your website. My sister took the kids to school the next day and talked to the teachers some more about this idea. The teachers were willing to see if the principal will allow this to be a school wide project instead of just two classrooms. The teachers also spoke with the guidance counselor and found out that a lot of kids at this school have a parent or parents serving in the war right now. So what we are trying very hard to do right now is get the principal to let us run with this project for the soldiers who are serving with your son Brian and also the parents of students at Page Elementary in Belmont, NC. Hopefully this project can grow and we can send lots of boxes!!!
Right now what I would like to know is if your son Brian knows of anyone in particular who could really use a personalized box to help cheer them up. If so, could you please send their name(s) and a few items they really want or need or just some things that may really excited them. We will still ship the box to Brian in care of the soldiers name. Also, if you could send us some more information on Brian's unit so I can pass the information along to the others who are trying to help get this project started. For example how many soldiers are in the unit, how many are female, items they need as a unit, when they arrived and when they think they might get to come home, etc. Again, we are trying to make this a school wide project for Page Elementary so any and all information I can pass along would be wonderful. Please let Brian and his unit know that we really appreciate what they are doing for us and our country. These guys and girls are wonderful!!! They are in our prayers and we hope they all return home very soon.

Thanks for your time!!


(Note from Marty...AnySoldier.US will NOT release ANY soldier's names to avoid any possibility of embarrassment to that soldier, his/her unit, or family. We also will not release any information about the military units that is not common knowledge.)

Wed 10/1/2003 8:23 PM

My name is Dick, I am a retired Firefighter for the City of San Jose. I believe that you met Kevin Conant at Walter Reed while he was there checking on Cory McCarthy, a young Trooper that I believe was in the same unit as your Son Brian. Just wanted to let you know that I sent my second package to Brian for Any Airborne Trooper. We appreciate what the your Son and the other boys (men) our doing over in Iraq.
We pray for their safe returns. It must be hard on you and your family...just letting you know that we care!!
Respectfully, RJ

Tue 9/30/2003 10:19 PM
Hi Marty -
I just heard about your web site on Charlotte's News Channel 14.

I am always looking for ways to help the soldiers deployed throughout the world. I especially like reaching out to those who do not receive packages from home. Call me skeptical, but I just wanted to send an email to validate your web site before sending a package to your son's unit.

Also, being a military spouse (my husband is Major John, C-130 pilot with NC Air National Guard), I am concerned about the families left behind. If you receive word about anything that can be done to help the families back home, please post to your web site.

I appreciate a response from you and look forward to doing what I can to help put a smile on a soldier's face. Thank you for your time.

(Note from Marty...Some links were added. If you know of a really good one, let me know!)

Tue 9/30/2003 5:40 PM
Dear sir,

I am from Charlotte, NC and have heard about the program your son has volunteered to liason for. He has my utmost respect for the service he is doing for our country during these times, but also for what he is doing for his fellow soldiers. He is in every sense of the word what an NCO is.

I too am a former soldier, 95B10 Military Police. Although I left the service 7 years ago to pursue civilian opportunities, I will never truly think like a civilian when it comes to these matters. I heard John Hancock discussing the program and I went home and told my wife that this is something that I need to do. Civilians take for granted (or have no idea) how much packages from the states can mean to a soldier. The thought of some complete stanger 15,000 miles away taking the opportunity to send a package of essentials has an enormous impact on that soldier's motivation and morale.

Anyway, count me in for the program. I will be sending a package soon. I have one request if I may. I would be honored more than you know if I could send your son a US flag and it flown over his post, and returned to me when he returns home or I can send a prepaid shipping box to have him send it back. Please let me know if he would be willing to do this.

Thank you,

(Note from Marty...Brian was asked about this and is VERY happy to do it!)

Mon 9/29/2003 9:03 PM
What you guys are doing is absolutely of paramount importance. We all have to remember that there are Americans out there who are fighting for us, and we also need to remember that they are our sons, our friends, our brothers...

I will send a package for them. It's unbelievable that there are guys and girls out there in harm's way who don't get mail--it's unthinkable to me--but you have opened my eyes. And hopefully, you have opened the eyes of many across the country whom I've e-mailed your information to.

You and your son are both class acts, and I will remember you both in my prayers.


Mon 9/29/2003 9:03 PM
Thank you for your site. Rest assured I will be sending objects of interest to the soldiers. Thanks,

Mon 9/29/2003 8:17 PM
I heard you talking to John Hancock tonight on WBT regarding your wonderful website, anysoldier. I know I don't need to thank you for the unselfish act of kindness....having a son overseas and being retired military, the idea was a natural, wasn't it?!?

My own 19-year old son, Lance Corporal Austin, is getting ready to leave for Afghanistan. His first tour was in Cuba, and I was EXTREMELY frustrated that NONE of his mail ever reached him. I have his new address and am very skeptical. I COMPLETELY understand the importance of news back home but past experience has left me very dissatisfied. Do you have any suggestions?

Thank you for what you attempt to do with this website, and my prayers are for you and your family AND your son.

Thank you for responding!

Suzanne (North Carolina)

Mon 9/29/2003 8:17 PM
Marty. I heard you on the John Hancock show tonight. I went to your web site and would love to help. I only have one question. Your page said something about careful wording on customs forms. Do you need to full out a customs form to mail a package? I have never mailed anything out of the country before.

I don't have a lot of money to spend on a package but I think I can send a little something. I have never been in the military my self, but my dad is retired from the service. He served both in the Navy and Army. And my brother is going to basic in Feb. I am a high supporter of our troops, and Bush's stand on terrorism. I am thankful to soldiers like your son. I would not be able to live in a free country without him. I hope you let him know, their are many southern boy's like my self, that are proud of him and the work he is doing for our way of life

Thanks, Drew

Mon 9/29/2003 8:05 PM
Hi Marty….
I heard you on WBT this evening and am interested in doing a story on your effort….are you here in NC?
Jim Newman

News Director

(Note from Marty...Jim ran a segment the next day on TV!)

Sun 9/28/2003 3:27 PM
My name is Terri and I live in upstate NY. I am a military mom and my son is in the army currently serving in Mosul. I have decided to accept items requested for our soldiers and send them but I was unsure of to whom I should send them to. I was so excited when I came across this information about your son distributing packages. I will keep you updated and can't wait to get started!
God Bless and Thank you and your son.
(New York)

Fri 9/26/2003 3:28 PM
Hi, Marty--

My husband and I own a tech/Web design company is Charlotte, and we heard about you and your son on WBT radio. I want you to know we went out that night to Target and did two Any Soldier care packages--one for a male soldier and one for a female soldier. We also do a company newsletter each month, and we'll mention your site in it...hopefully, more people will help with the care packages!

Thanks for all you're doing for our soldiers over there!

Timina (North Carolina)

Wed 9/24/2003 9:51 PM
I heard about your efforts regarding "any soldier" on Brad Krantz's radio show and I will be sending items to any soldier. I applaud you in this effort and I'm sure many soldiers will greatly benefit from your work.

God bless,

Sandy (North Carolina)

Wed 9/24/2003 5:35 PM
Dear Sir,

I am an Army National Guard soldier currently preparing for deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. A guy in my platoon told me about your website and I just wanted to let you know that I think this is the greatest thing I've ever seen. God Bless You and what you are doing.


Wed 9/24/2003 3:34 PM
Dear Mr. Horn

I picked up your letter at Ledos Pizza in LaPlata last week and have gotten a case of baby wipes to send to our troops. After I bought them I noticed that I mis-read the list and that you asked for anti-bacterial wipes. Would the troops be able to use the baby wipes as well? ... my son, ... is currently attending a West Point Prep. School in Marion, Alabama on an Association of Graduates scholarship. We want to support our troops because we know one day soon my son will be among them. Thanks for letting us know how to help. Go Army BEAT Navy
Ellen & Steven

Sun 9/21/2003 8:43 PM

Brad Krantz guided listeners to your page so I feel assured it is not a scam. I am going to coordinate a student activity gathering and sending items to your son so he can distribute same to those in need. Is the list still current? Any suggestions on top needs? Is US Postal or UPS better/faster carrier in your experience?

Let me know ASAP.

East Mecklenburg High School

(Note from Marty...Packages go the the APO in New York, so USPS is probably best.)

Sun 9/21/2003 8:47 AM
Am interested in helping out with "AnySoldier"...did my time with the "great Green Machine" in the late 60s...still remember mailcall as a highlight for all of your writeup you mentioned a customs form....what's the deal here...can't you just ship it to the address of record minus any formal paperwork?? Jim

(Note from Marty...VERY simple form you get at the post office, takes about a minute to fill out.)

Sat 9/20/2003 7:22 PM
Mr. Horn
I heard about your site on 1110 AM out of Charlotte NC and the link they posted was the one you mentioned.. http:\\ They have a link to it on their site if you know how to find it. It's at under the personality page under Krantz, hes the man who mentioned it. It recieved a lot of good response on air, although to my suprrise there were a few former vets who critized sending these kinds of things, I'm not sure why they would, I know when I was stationed in Korea, I loved what ever I got no matter what it was. I appreciate your quick response to my email, and especially what you are helping to do for our troops over seas. I'll try and start sending boxes out on monday :D


Fri 9/19/2003 4:31 PM

First, I'd like to say that I'm so glad to finally find out what I can do and how to go about doing it. You son should be VERY proud of you!

My question is, I have heard that you weren't allowed to send items to soldiers unless you were a family member. I am thinking about trying to organize a company wide "care package" drive and want to make sure that the items won't be returned or thrown away.

Any additional information you can provide would be appreciated!


Tammy (South Carolina)

(Note from Marty...You do NOT need to be a family member.)

Fri 9/12/2003 6:41 AM
Thank you for the info, and thank you for the idea to do this. I am passing this along to my sister-in-law, Lynn who is the one doing this wonderful thing. As of today 19 packages have been shipped out from her place of employment. I would love to see the guys faces when they start receiving these packages.
I'll keep you posted.

Fri 9/12/2003 12:30 AM
I got a new group interested. You should love this.

Lewisville High School Army JROTC has decided to adopt Brian's group/company/whatever-you-call-it as there contact with the troops over there! Talked to the Sgt. today and he went nuts. Got back from soccer games and had a overly psyched voice mail. He has internet connection in his classroom that is connected to a BIG screen tv. That way the whole group can see what he pulls up online. The different classes will be seeing Brian's and the Any Soldier sites.

Sent out a box of sport stuff today. Hope they have some fun with it. Also had wioed and stationary with stamps. Twin Mom, Marine wife, Cindy said she mailed out her boxes last week. She would like to know when they arrive.
Do the guys reply?

M.A. (South Carolina)

(Note from Marty...Do NOT send stamps. The soldiers send mail for free.)

Tue 9/9/2003 8:28 PM

Hi, my name is Debbie, and I live in North Dakota. I have a son who is in basic training at the present time, due to graduate from Ft Benning on Sept 26.
My family would like to send a package to your son to hand out to another soldier who needs the things we will be sending from your list. I see it was last updated today, so everything is still a go for sending packages then?
I hope someone would do the same for my son, if in the future he is sent someplace like that. This is a very special thing you and your son are doing. We will send the package as soon as I hear back from you.

(North Dakota)

Mon 9/8/2003 11:37 PM
I just read your web page about sending packages to Iraq. I have been supporting a couple of soldiers thorough "Operation Military Pride." It s a site that links soldier to folks who will mail packages. I keep the letters I've received back out on display in my living room. These guys (gals too) are giving up a lot to protect our continued freedom and we need to be doing much more to support them!
Tell Your son This Army Mom in Tennessee send her Thanks. I have a son stationed in VA and one in Fort Benning Ga. I am so very proud of all of our military and how they stand tall in today's world!

Vickie (Tennessee)

Sat 9/6/2003 9:19 PM
Hi Marty,

I was browsing through your website tonight, got the link from a girl I know from a Ft. Benning support group I belong to (her fiance will be joining the 173rd in Iraq at the beginning of October). Just wanted to tell you I think you have a great website there! The pictures you and your son have taken are amazing. I read through the "Attn: Any Soldier" page, and I will be more than happy to help in any way I can. Thank you, and your son for all you are doing for our troops "over there".

I have a question though... should there be a return address posted on packages/letters? I know for Afghanistan they had said to put the same address as the soldier as the return addy, for security reasons? .. Not sure if this is the same for where your son is.

Also, I saw you mentioned about getting the boxes at Walmart. Maybe you can also add a note that free Priority Mail boxes are available through the USPS website. (along with other shipping supplies), just a suggestion.

Again, great website. God bless you, your son, and all our troops!


Proud Army Wife

(Note from Marty...Post office requires a return address on a package.)

Fri 9/5/2003 4:13 PM
My name is Janet and my son is in 173rd - 74th Inf. Det. LRS. My sister in-law has posted flyers at her work for people to send to my son in the 74th to distribute to those who are not receiving anything. People have donated things for females, and a group picture of my sons unit doesn't show any females. Please let me know if the 508th can use any female items so that she may send it to your sons attention, or if you know of another unit that has females please email me back and let me know.
Thank You

(Note from Marty...Really, really great idea! Information about this was added to the page.)

Fri 9/5/2003 2:32 PM

And thank you so much for all this info. I am passing it along to friends and family. My son Spc. Jay is with the 173rd, attached to the 503rd Inf. there in Kirkuk. We get a call every 2 or so weeks. He tells us what he needs and we send about 2 or 3 pkgs. a week. We've sent just about everything you've mentioned but I forgot about the deet and flip flops! I know they go crazy having those boots on all the time. Jay got an ingrown toenail and has never had any problem with that in his life. It's hard to know what to mail when you're dealing in "what does he need 2 weeks from now". The mail is really good though. They are lucky to be in that area. Jay is also one of the lucky ones in a big house with a huge pool. I've enjoyed sending cheap rafts and pool toys. I worry so much about their mental state though. They are so young as was my dad, now 84, when he went off to WWII. I know Jay is sharing with everyone there and my heart goes out to soldiers who don't have anyone to write them or send them things. Just someone to let them know how much they are appreciated!! I thank you and your son for all you are doing. Kirkuk is becoming quite the success story even though you don't hear much on the news. Once again, thank you soooo much. Take care.

Sherlene (Texas)

Thu 9/4/2003 8:35 AM
Hi Brian's father --

My friend sent me your info from re: sending a care package to Any Soldier & I am happy to do so. I did it before for my friend's son & loved throwing a package together of this & that. I read your list of suggestions of what to send.

I thoroughly support our troops & hope they come home quickly & safely - all of them.

My dad was a WWII vet & my brother is a retired Marine.

I was born in D.C., work in D.C., have family in MD, & live in W.V. -- Happy to help!

Please add my email address to the list of updates:

Mimi (DC)

Wed 9/3/2003 4:29 PM
I just found your site through the web site. My son, age 21, is also with the 173rd. He is in the 2/503. I know he has been trained as a mortar man. My son calls me about once a week, but the calls are short. He doesn't say too much about what is going on as they cannot discuss recent events, and I'm sure he does not want to worry me. He did tell me about an incident that took place about a month ago regarding an RPG coming through the window where they were sleeping. Needless to say I miss him very much and there isn't a time when he is not on my mind.

Your list will be helpful to me. I have sent many care packages, but am never quite sure what to send. When I ask my son, he says he doesn't need anything. But it makes me feel like I'm doing something to help whan I can send things.

It sounds like they will be there a while yet. I have read the 173rd will be in Kirkuk until April, 2004. I was reading a few articles on line yesterday that talked about the tensions brewing again between the Turks and the Kurds. One article I read dated September 2nd was entitled "Turkish Kurds End 4-year Cease Fire". This doesn't sound too promising.

I would like to connect with some parents who have soldiers in the 173rd. Any information you can give me about what is going on would be so appreciated. I will keep praying for all of our soldiers.

Deborah (Michigan)

Tue 9/2/2003 11:14 PM
Marty, I heard about your effort to help soldiers at a twins club meeting this evening. I am anxious to help our men and women who are fighting in our countries name. Having no military background I am puzzled. I always believed that when one joined the military one would be taken care of while working. Do we not feed, dress, and care for our soldiers? Is this because our resources stretched or is it always like that? I would appreciate any of your time on this matter. Thank you for sending out suggestions for ways that average people can help.

Tue 9/2/2003 12:32 PM
Anything I can do to help.
Thanks for the info!

Tue 9/2/2003 10:00 AM
Saw your mailing guideline on the 173rd page. Thanks for putting that out.

I have an adopted son, Sgt Pat, with 2/503 of the 173rd there now. I have been sending him stuff, and stuff to share. I will send some to Brian as well, both for him and to pass around.

Your info is very good, and should help a lot of people.

Besides my "real job" I own a bar. We have done a couple of fund raisers to send stuff over, mostly through our local state rep and to people from this area. Please check out our web site for more info.

If I can do anything, please let me know.

Thanks for all you are doing for our troops,


Mon 9/1/2003 12:13 PM
Marty, thanks, will start gathering and send the stuff this week. Also have a family gathering 9/20 and will ask them to bring stuff for the guys.
Many thanks,

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