Take it from someone who’s been there – a package from home matters a great deal when you’re a world away from fiends and family during the holiday season and people are shooting at you.
Capt. Ashleigh Davidson a 2004 Granville graduate who went on the West Point addressed the assembled students at the third Operation Adopt-A-Soldier assembly Thursday.
Davidson thanked the students for getting involved because the boxes from home, even if they came from complete strangers, were a sign that “someone out there knew you still existed.”
As she readies for another tour overseas, this time to Afghanistan with the 10th Sustainment Brigade until some time in 2012, Davidson drove home the message that the packages were a well received gesture.
“It’s difficult when you realize life is going on without you at home and the Adopt-A-Soldier program made a huge difference in our lives over there. Receiving any kind of boxes, gifts, trinkets of any kind, letters from home made a huge difference,” Davidson said.
Davidson is the daughter of Granville science teacher Lisa Davidson and Joel Davidson of Wells.
Davidson said during her first deployment, to Iraq, it was little tokens of care and concern like these that helped to keep moral up for fellow soldiers. As someone who says she’s looking to make the Army a career, Davidson will likely be receiving more care packages from home.
As the project Adopt-A-Soldier group returned to Granville High School Nov. 17 to collect the result of the efforts of the students and the community for the third year, the organization’s founder, Cliff Seguin, said he continued to be impressed with what Granville has done.
Since its founding in 2003, Seguin said, Adopt-A-Soldier has been sending gift boxes out to an ever-expanding list of deployed servicemen, in hot spots all over the world, including, but not limited to, Iraq and Afghanistan. The group shipped about 200,000 packages, Seguin said.
With 206 shoe box-sized packages stacked to the ceiling in the hallway outside the gymnasium, Seguin said this one school district does more for the organization than other, larger schools.
All of the packages collected at Granville should be in the hands of deployed personnel in about two weeks, he said.
“I’m just overwhelmed by all of the support from my colleagues and the student body,” Lila Meyer said. Meyer said Saint Gobain took up a collection at its East Potter Avenue site and contributed toward the effort at the school as well as the Pine Grove Diner and children at the Mary J. Tanner Primary School.
Meyer organized the effort again this year after bringing the project to the school two years ago.
“Hopefully this will bring a smile to someone this holiday season,” Meyer said.