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Operation SANTA!!!

December 8, 2008

Ok, I will try and summarize the entire week, if that’s possible, at a bit later time. What I want to do is to start Operation Santa. I am posting APO addresses you can send Christmas presents to our troops at. I will also send recommendations for what I know they talked about, are interested in, or definitely can use. Just know that Camp Bucca is a HUGE facility with thousands of soldiers as well as thousands of Iraqi citizens, and ANYTHING sent there will be used.

Before we get to the soldiers I have been made aware of a fantastic program run by Gary Sinese that facilitates sending HUGE quantities of material for Iraqi children. Please check out this website

Al Asad is a HUGE air base, tons of soldiers that are not going to be home for Christmas. TONS and I MEAN TONS of Sox fans, die hard ones!

1LT Solaita was one of the folks that escorted us around in country for the week. A finer man you won’t meet, pretty much a larger version of Major Donahue:) Solly is a guy that likely won’t and never would ask for anything. Oh, and unbeknownst to me the whole week, the guy’s a Giants fan, so GIants stuff might be in order. Also know that anything you might want to send for children in Iraq Solly could help get out there.

1LT SOLAITA

MNC-I CJ1 PROGRAMS

CAMP VICTORY, IRAQ

APO AE 09342

James B. Selig

Lance Corporal/ USMC

SecFor Bn S-1 Unit Mail Clerk

Al Asad Security Force Battalion, Iraq

Unit 43504

FPO AP 96426-2504

DSN 440-2018

Capt Digati and the 2/14 are manning FOBs (Forward Operating Bases) in Baghdad and around Iraq. They are WAY out of the way and in remote areas. Not alot of company but alot of business being done by these brave folks.

ATTN: CPT DIGATI

2-25 SBCT / HQ B-TROUP

2-14 CAV 6260

APO AE 09378

SSG Sheeran and the gang he works with at their base are HARD CORE gamers! I am taking care of their console needs, but these guys have laptops and love to play games, anyone interested in sending them PC titles feel free. They LOVE RTS stuff, heard TOTAL WAR and COMPANY OF HEROES were played and liked and they were looking for more copies.

SSG Sheeran, Chris

2 25 SBCT

B Troop 2/14 Cav

6260

APO, AE 09378

SFC Peterson is a stud, awesome man who helped us around Camp Bucca which is one of the most important bases over there. It contains thousands of US Troops and THOUSANDS of Iraqi civilians. The troops there are working WITH the civilians, their families and many others on a mission to help educate the citizens of Iraq to help take back the country that is rightfully theirs. They are in DIRE need of school supplies. Oh! And another thing, from what I understand they CANNOT get enough soccer balls over there!

The service men and woman can and will take anything. There are quite a few board gaming fans in the mix over there, I know PSP’s, DS’s and many other handhelds are in high demand as well as just everyday stuff. Books, movies, anything. They will appreciate anything they get.

SFC Peterson will the be the ‘go to’ guy on this, sending everything through and to him to get to the folks there:) Just know that there are MANY many Iraqi children in and out of this facility, from newborns to teenagers so clothing can be appropriate as well. If you are not sure of their customs just know to send very plain and NOTHING flashy in the way of clothes.

SFC Peterson, Michael L

HHT 1-102 CAV

Camp Bucca, Iraq

APO AE 09375

I also received this from the mother of a soldier serving over there.

SPC Cheney, Zachary

BSTB4-10 Mtn Div

FOB Loyalty

APO AE 09390-9999

Here is another one! SSG Greene gave me the ultimate honor of participating in her re-enlistment (she re-enlisted “indef” by the way, meaning she’s now a lifer!) when I arrived at the central palace in Baghdad. She’s an M&M JUNKIE so think about that one!!

Kelly Greene

B Co STB

XVIII ABN

APO, AE 09342

I am working on things on my end but anyone wishing to send stuff please feel free. It DOES NOT need to be something expensive, hell a box a slim jims could be a HUGE hit over there:)

Think of some of the nicer but odd american snacks we all have access too, that works!

Games, movies, books, outdoor sports equipment is HUGE, basketballs, boxing gear is big, softball and baseball stuff as well.

I know they’ll sincerely appreciate anything you send.

13 Comments leave one →
  1. Trisha permalink
    December 8, 2008 4:01 pm

    Curt – Thanks so much for posting this information. I will have to get some packages out ASAP. I have had some family and friends over there and some other helpful hints for sending things are: Customs Forms MUST be attached. Alcohol is usually confiscated. Chocolate melts. And most importantly, if sending small items…cram as much stuff as you can into those FLAT RATE boxes…you will be amazed just how much stuff you can fit into those!!!!(And they are FREE at from the Post Office.)
    On a completely side note…Curt you are on my list of “Ten People I would most like to dine with”. You seem to be an amazing human being, you say it like it is and I’d be willing to bet that people always know exactly where they stand with you!
    Take Care and God Bless!

    Trisha
    So. California

  2. Chad permalink
    December 8, 2008 4:37 pm

    Hey Curt,

    Thanks for posting this, i have brother who is in the armed forces so i appreciate it. I am a die hard Red Sox fan and want to personally thank you for the last five years. You are truely a hero on and off the field. I would love to see you back for a half year in a sox uniform. Go Sox WS Champs in 09 would be nice.

    Thanks again Curt
    Chad
    Exeter,NH

  3. Elvis Elvisberg permalink
    December 8, 2008 5:09 pm

    Great stuff, Curt, thanks for posting this, and thanks for your work/fun on this trip.

  4. Ryan permalink
    December 8, 2008 6:26 pm

    What kinds of multiplayer functionality do they have on the bases? For example, if a few copies of Left 4 Dead made their way over would the troops have internet access to play it, or be stuck with just single-player bots?

  5. Ten 44 permalink
    December 8, 2008 11:05 pm

    I have sent over 58 care packages to about 28 men overseas in the last four years for my construction union. Our cost is somewhere north of $4000. Postage runs $10.80 per box.

    Cough drops, eye drops, fiber pills, anti diarrhea pills, Pringles, hand wipes, foot powder and spray, inner-sole foam pads, socks, Slim Jims (no pork), beef jerky, box cutters and long razor tools, magazines, sunflower seeds, Tylenol PM, crazy stuff like Slinkies and Pez — just walk down a few aisles of your local CVS and pick stuff out. Use pop corn to fill the spaces in the box to combat shifting of the items.

    You have to tape all the sides and openings of the box real good. It’s better to send stuff in the USPS Priority Flat Rate Military Boxes epically designed for our servicemen and women — your Post Office has the Flat Rate Military boxes on hand.

    Custom forms must be made out — you don’t have to be real accurate just include most of the stuff, guess the weight, and downsize the cost.

    Make sure that you write “No Pork,” “No Porn,” “No Booze,” and “No Gambling” on the comment line of the custom form. Also write in the ‘if abandoned’ box to forward it to the “Commanding Officer” of the recipient’s unit.

    Make sure you get the address 100% right and send that sucker off at the Post Office, it’ll put a smile on your face that will last for many days to come.

    Good Luck, God Bless America and God Bless Us All.

  6. Jerry permalink
    December 9, 2008 9:19 am

    These men and women are an awe inspiring force for good and should be treated as such. My PSP, which is a newer one, has just found a new owner in Iraq.

    I would also like to take a second to say to Curt that what he did for this region in 2004 will never be forgotten. Ha says things like the Sox are not his team anymore, but he’s wrong. He is in the Larry Bird, Tom Brady, Troy Brown, Bill Russell, Tommy Heihnson, Cousy, Paul Pierce, Johnny Pesky, Ray Borque, and all the other icons wing of the Boston Sports Hall of Fame. The Red Sox will always be his team, Boston will always welcome him, and I personally will always be grateful to him.

  7. CPT Chris permalink
    December 9, 2008 9:32 am

    Curt,

    You truly are a GREAT AMERICAN! Being a member in the Army and have served in Iraq; your visit with the Troops will do wonders and give memories that will last a life time. These memories make the time away from their loved ones a little easier, thanks!!!

    Unfortunately, when the Sox won the World Series in ’04, my unit from Mass was heading over to Iraq. We literally landed in Germany at the bottom of the 7th, Game 4. I must say that an airplane full of die hard sox fans was a site that is unexplainable. We had been on the airplane for 7+ hours and we just took over the TV at the USO. It was an amazing scene when Keith Foulke grabbed that grounder back to the mound. You can only guess what happened next!!!! I think we horrified the entire country of Germany, let alone the air terminal. There were troops heading home and returning to Iraq, they all looked at us like a group of crazy people. It is a moment that will live with me for the rest of my life! Thank you!

    I must add that victory in ’04 was bitter sweet! My unit from MA was part of the 42ID, based out of NY. The division had many and I MEAN many Yankees fans! The ’04 World Series victory made our deployment that much more enjoyable; we, the soldiers from MA ARNG had an entire year to boast about our beloved RED SOX.

    Thank you for your unwavering support of the Armed Forces! It means a lot to all of us that wear the uniform!

  8. SoxFANatic38 permalink
    December 9, 2008 9:42 am

    Your conversation with Dennis and Callahan was inspiring. It is one thing to read the words on your blog (which is great, keep it going) but to hear them in your own voice gives them so much more meaning. To hear you say how “life impacting” your visits were gives me goosebumps. As the daughter of a soldier who “Rode up Front for Patton” (and was one of the first Americans to ever see a concentration camp), I was moved by your depiction of our nation’s finest who are serving overseas. To hear “We’re Winning” when others dare not utter those words because they are “politically incorrect” is encouraging. Thank you for providing specific mailing info so that we can show our troops how much we support them.

    BTW, you are lifetime member of Red Sox Eternal and most of us will never forget what you did for our team. I hope that the Schillings will always call Massachusetts home. The work that you and Shonda do to make this world a better place is truly appreciated.

  9. Mark permalink
    December 9, 2008 10:20 am

    Curt:

    I am looking forward to your lunch on the 11th more then ever now. I was stationed at Camp Bucca in 2005 and was one of the people D&C were talking about this morning. I am dying to hear more about Bucca, number one on my list: is the softabll field replica of Fenway Park still standing?

  10. Maryann permalink
    December 9, 2008 11:57 am

    YOU ROCK! WE MISS YOU HERE IN PHILLY! YOU ARE AN INSPIRATION. THANKS! I ADOPTED A SOLDIER, A PEN-PAL, WHO YOU MET AT CAMP BUCCA…SGT SHANNON. THIS IS SOOOO COOL. FOR THE RECORD..MY SONS FIRST TEAM IS, OF COURSE THE PHILLIES, AND HIS SECOND FAVORITE IS THE SOX! THE USO TOUR YOU DID AND JOURNALED ABOUT IS AN INSPIRATION. I HAVE STATED TO MY SOLDIER AS YOU HAVE THAT “THIS IS TH INFORMATION THAT AMERICA SHOULD BE TOLD ABOUT”. THANK YOU FOR GETTING THIS INFORMATION OUT TO US ALL AND FOR INSPIRING US! YOU ARE A GREAT MAN!

  11. john ford permalink
    December 10, 2008 12:02 pm

    Its nice to know the Liberal blackout isnt always in effect. We have great things to report out of Iraq, and its too bad someone like me, who lives in Boston, has to be spoon fed the leftist angle 24-7 when it comes to geo politics and news in general.

    Curt you are my hero – truly, and every single man & women serving are also my hero’s.

  12. : - ) permalink
    December 12, 2008 1:09 pm

    By the way Curt, we’ve just got an email from a source about your donation to the Iraqi Children…”WOW”, was all he could say about it. Thanks for your continuous support for the troops and our mission to getting this country on it’s feet. This is great stuff and the American people should also know that their goods being donated are going to a good cause. We continue hope the Iraqi’s benefit from all that we’re doing out here.

    -Sully

  13. April 29, 2009 2:26 am

    I’m gonne think ebout thet ell dey todey kid. Susan1962

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