April 17, 2014




MarineParents.com's Founder Tracy Della Vecchia (left) and Outreach Programs Coordinator Candice Fields (right) celebrate Volunteer Manager Angie Regan's (center) 2014 Columbia Daily Tribune Hero Award.
I had the pleasure of participating in an event one evening this week. Our local newspaper, the Columbia Daily Tribune, along with two key sponsors, Joe Machens Auto Dealerships and Landmark Bank, hosted an event to recognize individuals who give their time and effort by volunteering for one (or more) of the many philanthropic organizations in Columbia, MO and the surrounding communities.    


In his welcome speech Nick Foster, Executive Director of the Voluntary Action Center, spoke about an independent film that he was able to view at a local film festival called 20 Feet from Stardom. The film tells the true stories of some of the backup singers behind some of music's most legendary performers, the vocalists who aren't in the spotlight, the ones who voices millions of people recognize but whose name no one knows.  


He likened individuals who volunteer to the backup singers who add richness and depth to the songs of others. In my opinion, his comparison really hit home. Without the volunteers who write, encourage, and pray for our wounded troops each day, Operation Prayers and Letters™ would not exist! Because each of you take the time to put your heart and soul into showing these heroes how much you care about their health and well-being, you ensure that they are NOT forgotten and that they ARE supported.


Another of the speakers that night pointed out that it's a rare and special occasion when someone stops and takes notice of a volunteer and their commitment to helping others and that, even though gaining recognition is not something most volunteers seek, we should all do it more often. So, in the spirit of that thought - and in case we do not let you know enough how much we appreciate your time and efforts - THANK YOU Operation PAL™ VOLUNTEERS! You are our heroes and we'd be lost without YOU.


Volunteers are the only human beings on the face of the earth who reflect this nation's compassion, unselfish caring, patience, and just plain loving one another. ~Erma Bombeck



God Bless


Angie Regan

Volunteer Manager
Operation Prayer and Letters™
MarineParents.com, Inc.
Card Writer Focus:
 Operation PAL™ Participants Inspire New Writers!

Hand-made with love.
We recently received a batch of cards from a new writing duo, Brenda and Amy. The two friends, who say they are more like a mother and daughter, meet twice a month, not only to hand-make cards, but also to laugh and talk and pray for our military members, wounded, ill, and injured troops, and their family members. These caring ladies have nicknamed our Operation Prayers & Letters™ participants "Wounded Inspiring Warriors" because they are an inspiration to each of them.  Brenda says they inspire her to "keep going when the going gets rough."

Each card comes with a special message and includes a brief letter of introduction. The cards also include this special message in closing: "God Bless you with strength, peace, and, when the day is done, a blessed rest."

Thank you, Brenda and Amy, for caring so much for our wounded troops! We are forever grateful for your support!

If you know someone who may like to send cards to our wounded heroes, please click here to visit our website for more information.
Participant Highlight:
LCpl. Jesse's Love of Motocross Continues!

LCpl. Jesse rode in the opening ceremony of the Monster Engergy Supercross on the bike he built.

Before joining the Marine Corps, Jesse loved to race dirt-bikes. Now, his home is in sunny California where, along with his Marine buddies, he is living out his dream of riding dirt-bikes again! Jesse's Dad, Shane, tells us that Jesse is also helping other injured military members in their recovery process by being an active member in The Warrior Built Foundation.


The Warrior Built Foundation was created by a combat-wounded Marine, Nick Hamm. The purpose of the foundation is to provide new motivation and camaraderie to, and to spark the imaginations of, combat veterans and wounded heroes through vocational and recreational therapy. At the same time, the foundation provides it members a release as they work on coping with similar difficulties in positive, therapeutic way in a safe, fun and, supportive environment. 


It sounds to me like Jesse is right where he needs to be! In fact, earlier this year, Jesse was the first ever double leg amputee to race in the Baja 1000 Off Road Race on a dirt-bike. Truly amazing!


For more information about LCpl. Jesse, or to check on his progress, please click here.

An Eagle Scout Dreams Big
Teams With Local Girl Scouts to Give the Gift of Pillow Cases for Operation Prayers and Letters™
Girl Scout Troop 404 and
their pillowcases.

Scout Ryan, of Beaverdam, Virginia, organized a Care Package Project™ item drive for MarineParents.com, Inc.™, for his Eagle Scout Service Project, the final step in becoming an Eagle Scout.

Ryan put more than 130 hours of his time into this project and raised more than $1,000 in goods for the Care Package Project. Ryan also teamed up with local Girl Scout Troop 404 to make pillowcases for Operation Prayers and Letters™. They made more than 60 pillowcases in all, which were then sent to Operation Prayers and Letters™ to be distributed among the 25 wounded, ill, and injured troops currently in the program.

Congratulations Ryan, and thank you for all of your hard work and support!
Mission Statement & Thank You

The mission of Operation Prayers and Letters™ is to provide support to wounded, ill, and injured troops through prayers and letters written by people in communities throughout the United States.

Thank you so very much for keeping our wounded, ill, and injured service members in your thoughts when you write and pray. Your kindness is most appreciated!
In This Issue
Total Cards Sent:

Most Recent Changes:

Added: None
Removed: Cpl. Chris 1/7

Removed: Cpl. Todd 

Operation Prayer and Letters™ Writer Spotlight:

We welcome photos and stories from all our Operation Prayers and Letters™ writers. Thank you for all the love, support, and encouragement you send to the wounded, ill, and injured participants! You truly are making a difference.

Send Cards and 
Letters to:

Marine's Name & Company
c/o Operation PAL™
P.O. Box 758
Columbia, Missouri 65205


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We hope this week's edition of our email newsletter has been useful for you and your family. If there are topics you would like us to address, or if you have other suggestions for the newsletter, please contact us.  


MarineParents.com, Inc., is an IRS-approved501(c)(3) public charity. MarineParents.com, Inc., was founded in January 2003 in response to parents' needs to find information and to have a place to connect and share® with one another during their Marine's career. Our free online services and connections have expanded to support and educate Marine moms and dads, spouses, families and friends. We've more than 400,000 Marine and recruit families during boot camp, training, active duty and deployments. We've shipped more than 38,000 care packages overseas to our Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan, sent 87,000 prayers and letters to injured Marines and served thousands of meals to wounded heroes and their families on the East and West coasts. You've found a place to connect and share.®

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