'Operation We Care' Sends Packages to Troops for Holidays - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

'Operation We Care' Sends Packages to Troops for Holidays

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(Photo: WBOC) (Photo: WBOC)

SHARPTOWN, Md.- Hundreds of people gathered in the small town of Sharptown on Saturday with the purpose of brightening up the day of some soldiers overseas.

"Operation We Care" is an organization founded on the Eastern Shore in 2007. Since then it has grown in capabilities, and sends about 800 care packages to troops serving abroad.

In attendance were service members and veterans as well as many family members and friends of those who are still serving. Children were designing cards of various colors, while hundreds of people stuffed boxes full of goods to be shipped half way across the world.

Dean Elliott was one of the soldiers who was at the event. He had just returned from his last period of service. He said he was the person who handled the mail when he was overseas, and so he saw first hand just how happy packages like these made the soldiers who received them.

"It makes your day," he said, speaking in full uniform. "Just that extra thing you might need or maybe something you don't need. It takes your mind off something else."

Terry Scott wore a shirt that said "Proud Father," as he spoke to the crowd. His son is about to return to Afghanistan to continue his service, something he said he is very proud of.

"When they're over there for months or years, it's a pretty desolate area. It's tough. They're away from home. They have no idea what they're up against at times. And to get a box, open it up, and realize, 'Hey this has air from my house or this has something from Delmarva,' and they just go around smiling. It's incredible. It's a box of love. That's what it is," said Scott.

Jeff Merritt is the primary organizer of the event. He said the idea for it dated back to the holiday season of 2007. Since then, the event has grown greatly.

"Our first event had 101 packages. Then we did 680 in May. We're going to do close to 800 today. So it keeps growing thanks to the community," Merritt said.

At the event, there were also multiple scrolls, each of which were hundreds of feet long, covered with thousands of signatures. These scrolls would then be sent out to multiple troops in combat. Anastasia Palombo signed her name on one of these scrolls for her uncle.

"He's actually overseas right now. We barely see him. But he's happy to be overseas," said Palombo.

WBOC then asked her whether she missed her uncle, to which she had an enthusiastic response.

"Yes," she said. "A lot."

To get involved with Operation We Care, go to http://operationwecare.org/.

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