Delivering the spirit of Christmas to military families
– one Christmas Tree at a time.
Messages from Troops: 2009
From troops and their families that received a Real Christmas Tree through the Trees for Troops Program in 2009


Dear Trees for Troops,

This is way overdue, but I figured better late than never (I've been saving the tag from my tree since last year to remind me to write this note).  Last year, my daughter & I were living in Rock Island Arsenal, IL and received one of your trees.  My husband was deployed at the time, and the beautiful tree we received was just right for my little girl and I to decorate.  Just wanted to thank you for making a tough Christmas more special, and share 2 photos with you.

With sincere thanks,

Kari G.

kari g

kari g 2 photo


January 15, 2010

We loved our tree this year! We took part in the Trees for Troops @ Fort Gordon, and I believe it's easily one of the prettiest trees we've ever had. I'm attaching a couple of pictures of it in hopes that Donnie, Haley, Hannah and Lynn see this and know just how much their tree donation was appreciated and loved. Thank you for thinking of us and all the troops around the world. It means so much to know that people appreciate the sacrifices military members and their families make each and every day. A great big thank you hug to Donny, Haley, Hannah and Lynn! You made our Christmas very special this year.


The family of SPC Chris

specialist Chris tree for troops thanks


On Nov 21, 2009, at 3:08 AM, Lisa wrote:

I found you listed on the Christmas Spirit Foundation website that you send trees via mail order. I was so thrilled to see a Tree farm from Iowa! And very close to home, at that!

My name is Lisa. My hometown is Hampton, Iowa and my husband is from Iowa Falls, Iowa. My husband is a Warrant Officer in the U.S. Army. He has been in the Army for 17 years. We have been stationed in Kaiserslautern, Germany since May 2006. My husband, Brad, is on his 2nd year + deployment to Iraq since we arrived here. When we landed in Germany, he deployed 9 weeks after we got here, was in Iraq for 13 months & 13 days, returned and was home for about 14 months and then deployed again. The separations have been hard, especially for our 3 boys. Brad has been away for 10 months now and is set to return by January 21st. We are anxiously awaiting his return so we can be together as a family again. My husband will be moving out of his "metal container" that he has called "home" for this past year around December 16th and into a tent. The new troops that are replacing them will be moving into the CHUs. (containerized housing units) SO, for Christmas, we will be unable to see him via webcam. He may be able to call, but the lines for the phones will be very long, and we have found in the past that often the calls cannot go through due to such high usage. It will be another tough Christmas apart.

SO, for the reason that I am emailing….our 3 boys have expressed to me that daddy needs a Christmas tree for the holidays. They are busy making ornaments to send for him to decorate his tree. Can you email a price quote as to how much it would cost to send him a tree in Iraq to brighten up his tent???

I look forward to hearing back from you soon!
Have a great day!

Kaiserslautern, Germany


From: Lisa
To: Lee
Subject: Re: Christmas tree for my soldier

It will be free! I was in the 24th Infantry Division in Augsburg Germany for three years (before internet and when a three minute telephone call cost $26 in 1963 value dollars) before going to the highlands of Vietnam in 1966-67 as a Captain. I appreciate all that your family sacrifices for us.

Lisa, I'm forwarding your e-mail to the rest of the Iowa Christmas Tree Growers. Of the 100 Trees for Troops trees that members of our association donate with our names attached, very few growers receive thank you letters. Your e-mail shows us how important it is to continue the program, thank you notes or not.



From: Ariel
Subject: Christmas Tree: December 2, 2009

Today I picked up my tree from Fort Gordon, Ga. It was a beautiful 6 foot tree from Berry's Christmas Tree Farm in Covington, Ga! We decorated it in RED WHITE AND BLUE! It was a wonderful way to bring a little bit of Christmas spirit to our family! My husband is deployed to Afghanistan and it just hasn't felt like Christmas without him. Thank you so much for the wonderful gift and giving us a little piece of Christmas!

God Bless!
Grovetown, GA

TFT photo


From: Houston
Subject: You have made our Christmas very Merry!

Dear Trees for Troops,

Thank you for making our Christmas extra special this year with a Real Christmas Tree! Here at Ft. Campbell the NCO's operating the tree pick-up site we"re extremely courteous and helpful at Fryar Stadium. Our 5 year old is very excited about decorating it tomorrow! Unfortunately I will not be here next Christmas so we are trying to make this one extra special. The tree you have given us is going to help us do just that! The service you provide is very thoughtful and caring. I can't possibly put in to words the joy your thoughtfulness has brought our family. Thank you! May God Bless You and all that you do.



From: John
Subject: Senator White

Thank You Senator White and your family for your words and for the Tree. We are moved by the gift so many have sent. Thank you so much for your support. This is the third year we've received a tree from the Trees for Troops program and look forward to returning the favor to them. I pray you and your family a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from my family to yours.

SFC Pasco and clan from Ft Knox KY. (soon to be retired)


From: Celeste
Subject: Thank you for our tree!


Today, I picked up a tree from Joint Expeditionary Base - Little Creek Fort Story location. Thank you so much!! It looks wonderful in our living room. My husband is active duty U.S. Navy and currently on a mission. You are appreciated!!


Virginia Beach, VA


From: Matt
Subject: Thank you!

I would like to extend my sincere thanks to everyone at Trees for Troops; the tree farmers, the volunteers, and everyone who provides donations to make this possible and to keep it going. I just picked up a tree today and I greatly appreciate the fact that people like you take the time to remember the military and our families during the holidays.

GySgt Miller/USMC
MCAS Cherry Point, NC


From: Mrs. M Diou
Subject: Thank You from a Coast Guard Family...

Dear Trees for Troops,

My name is Marisol and my husband is an active Coast Guardsman aboard a Cutter based in Boston. A few days ago, my husband and I were stressing out about paying the bills, Christmas gifts, along with purchasing birthday gifts for our little one who turns 6 this Saturday, along with saving what little money we have for a trip out West that I have to make with our little one so that she can visit her father for the holidays. With all this going on, we were saving up pennies, dimes, quarters and walking everywhere if we could and how where we going to get a tree.

The Christmas Tree for us is the most important part of the holiday because for the last two years, Christmas Day, we have yet to spend together as a family. Our little one is always out west with her father, and my husband, is usually underway and I am all alone. He is underway, out to seas more than he is home. When a Christmas tree comes into our home, we get to put on the lights and the ornaments as a family, put on the music and my husband makes a wonderful meal for us, that for us is the meaning of Christmas.

My husband unexpectedly was told by his chief that he had won the lottery for a Christmas Tree and that it was to be picked up on the 9th at Shipping and Receiving. When I heard about the winning, I jumped for joy. I couldn't believe that this Christmas, with all the troubles we were having, we had won a Christmas Tree! People might say it was luck of the draw but I believe someone up above was watching over us.

When I read it was from "Trees for Troops" like I have seen many times on TV, it only touched my heart that much more. There are so many people in the United States that have no idea that the Coast Guard are part of the military. Many don't even know that with the War in Iraq, that our Coastie's are over there fighting and protecting with the Army, Navy, Airforce and Marine Corps. And, a majority of the people, don't know that the Coast Guard have been in every single War that America has had with the exception of the American Revolution, so to have this tree, to read the Coast Guard website and seeing that the Coasties, that they too receive this wonderful gift, makes me so proud and honored to be a Coast Guard wife, a Military Wife and mother.

I am forever blessed that such an organization exists. I am always grateful for any hardworking organization that helps and support our troops and their families. It is people like you that give the Troops hope, you are the ones that touch their hearts especially when they have no families. It is the small and large gifts, letters, cards, trees and so on that touches the Troops's is that "Thank You" and "Appreciation" that make the Troops ready to fight and to protect hour after hour, day after day under the harshest conditions.

My husband and I cannot express our gratitude for the tree and for the beautiful perfect tree that sits in our living room.

I wish all of the Troops and their families, as well as all the people involved with Trees for Troops and their families a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Marisol and Petty Officer Diou.


From: Tanya
Subject: Thank you for the best tree ever!

We had given up on the idea of a real Christmas tree when we got the notice that you had one for us. I took my son with me and told him to pick one. We had no idea what it looked like until we got home. My daughter helped me mount it in the stand and we all cut the strings to free the tree. WOW, we all just could not believe our eyes. It is the most wonderful tree ever. You really made an impact on us and I just wanted to say thank you for all our hearts. Merry Christmas to you all.


From: Jessie
Subject: Thank You

My family just wanted to thank you for the Christmas Tree. When my husband went to go pick out our tree it was very cold and the people handing out the trees were very kind and helpful. Our two little boys just love the tree and are having fun looking at it.

Thank you again,
The Juhl Family

julh family tft photo


From: Ashley
Subject: A Very Special Thank You!!

Dear Trees For Troops,

My husband is a Drill Sergeant stationed at Fort Benning, GA. This year has been a difficult one for our family. I wasn't sure how Christmas was going to go for us - I haven't been able to find a job, our water heater is broken, and this month we've been living off borrowed money from family and savings bonds.
My husband brought home a Trees For Troops flier and I couldn't have been happier. I wasn't sure how we were going to get a Christmas tree this year.

The day Trees for Troops arrived at Fort Benning, myself and our two boys stood in line to get our tree. Our 4 year old son picked out his perfect tree, so excited about Christmas.

When we got home and I unloaded the tree into the house, my son said, "Mom, this is going to be the best Christmas ever!"

Thank you Trees for Troops. You're so much more than just a show of appreciation for the military. You brought Christmas spirit to a stressed out mom trying to make it through the season and so much joy to our boys!

~An Army Wife

army wife ashley photo


From: Donald
Subject: x-mas tree

Thank you so much for the wonderful Christmas tree. Attached is a picture of my family celebrating our daughter's first Christmas. My wife Danita & daughter Arabella appreciate your work so much.

MSgt McCoy
375th Dental Squadron
Scott Air Force Base, Il

mccoy trees for troops photo


From: Candace
Subject: Christmas tree

Our family would like to thank all who are involved in this program! We got our tree today at Nellis AFB, and we all agree it is the most beautiful one we've ever had. It was great to be able to go to the lot and pick out a tree, the kids had a great time. We truly appreciate your generosity!


The Redman family


From: Cynthia
Subject: Thank You!

We thank you so very much for our wonderful Christmas tree. My husband is injured right now, and with money tight, this really helped out and brightened our spirits.

SPC Jared & Cynthia Bever
Fort Bragg, NC

bever trees for troops photo


From: Irma
Subject: Happy Holidays

I will like to say thank you for our Christmas tree, it's a beautiful. My husband is deployed to Iraq with 2-15 FA Ft Drum NY.

The kids and I decorated the Christmas tree with their School crafts and some other decorations we have collected thru the years. Again thank you all for giving us happiness while our love ones are far away from us, it's very difficult not to have them with us during the Holiday season. This Christmas tree brought so much happiness to the kids and it really does smells and feels like Christmas in our home now!

With gratitude,

The Mannings family

mannings trees for sailors photo


From: Nicole
Subject: THANK YOU

We just want to say THANK YOU to everybody who makes Trees For Troops possible. We really love our tree and are grateful for what you do. We really appreciate it. Thank You

Merry Christmas and God bless you.

SSG Holmes & family

holmes family photo


From: Michael
Subject: trees for troops

We are one of the Bases that received the trees donated by FedEx and the Christmas Spirit Foundation. We received 500 trees and they were gone in about 24 hours. Every year the military members stationed here at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Texas and the other 3 surrounding military bases are so appreciative for the free trees at a time like this. We take one tree every year and put it inside for customers to see while they snack on free cookies, coffee and hot chocolate. My wife is in the Air Force and I work for the Air Force at Outdoor Recreation which is the location that we hand these trees out every year. Just wanted to say thank you and look forward to handing out trees next year. Tree note came from the Kirsch Family in California thank you very much.


michael g photo


From: Deniece
Subject: Christmas Tree 2009


We are the Rivera family stationed at Ft Bragg, NC. We wanted to express our appreciation for your donation to Trees for Troops. With the employment rate being so low here in Fayetteville, NC and having 1 toddler with one on the way, you helped make this a joyous occasion for our toddler. With your help, our house finally feels like Christmas is coming. Thank you for your support.

Our tree was donated with the help of:
Schuylkill Valley
Class of 2014
Leesport, PA


The Rivera Family
Ft Bragg, NC 2009

rivera family troops with trees


From: Cait
Subject: our patriotic tree

My son and I picked out this tree at the Ft. Bragg trees for troops since my husband will be gone for the holidays. Being an Army family we are very patriotic, so it's decorated all in Red, White and Blue. It's such a nice tree, we love it! Here are a few of our pictures.

The Whipple Family

whipple trees for army families


From: TJ
Subject: Thank You for the Christmas Tree from Camp Arifjan _ Kuwait

Merry Christmas Gale House Tree Farms and Ohio Christmas Tree Companies, and the Trees for Troops program:

My name is TJ and I am an American civilian contractor working on Camp Arifjan in Kuwait. I am a Swim Instructor / Sr. Lifeguard at the Aquatics Facility on base and we were fortunate enough to receive three of your wonderful Christmas Trees for our MWR facility. The weather is cool now so we had plenty of time to build a base and we even started the decorating with some ornaments donated by some middle school kids from Granville Middle School. I'm fortunate enough to live off base so I can pick up some more decoration items at the local store.

I just wanted to thank you for this wonderful gift. The soldiers who I serve here are enjoying them, especially our aquatics themed tree and are so pleased to have REAL Christmas trees (they smell great). The outdoor aquatics facility is open all year for soldiers to use for PT as well as recreation and the trees are a welcome invitation to take a dive. Born and raised in Chicago and now from So Cal, I too am so glad to have a real tree, as this will be my first Christmas away from my wife and daughters as well. The first thing everyone does is smell it - it's awesome! We have people here from all over the world including India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Philippines, England, etc - and for some it is a totally foreign tradition. I'm trying my best to help them understand the Christmas Spirit.

I know the decorations aren't real great, but we did our best and I even took requests singing Christmas carols. The non-American folks thought I was a bit loopy.

You might get other emails from staff or soldiers as we're letting them know who was generous enough to provide them.

Merry Christmas!


TJ and the Camp Arifjan Aquatics Staff - Kuwait

camp arifjan aquatics photo


Wahmhoff Farms Nursery received a Thank You/Christmas card, and one of the consumers that purchased and donated a tree from our farm did also, and shared it with us:

Card sent to Wahmhoff Farms:
Thank you so much for donating Christmas trees to us this year. We are stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas. My husband left for Iraq last month and we appreciate your support! My husband and I are both from Kalamazoo, MI so this was extra special having a tree coming from Gobles! We are so thankful for people like you that support our soldiers and their families! Have a Wonderful Christmas, Thank-You So Much! -- Bill, Nicole, Alyssa, Kristin & Ethan. (1SG - US Army)


Thank you card sent to a participating consumer:
Thank you so much for your donation of the Christmas tree (Trees for Troops)! My husband is currently serving in the Navy and we are stationed @ Camp Lejeune in N.C. Your gift of a Christmas tree really made our Christmas special! Our two boys especially loved the tree :). Again, thanks so much for your generous gift and we all hope you have a blessed holiday! Sincerely - Samantha, Joseph, Scott and Joey.



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