NEW HAMPSHIRE (CBS) — For sixteen years, Laura Landerman-Garber has been sending notes of gratitude to service members far from home. What began as a family tradition has grown into a massive operation.
Laura, her family, and a few neighbors bundle, pack and push out more than five thousand pounds of holiday cards to troops stationed across the country and overseas.
When a family friend was deployed on the USS Theodore Roosevelt, she wanted to send them a card but ended up doing much more.
“Okay, well let’s send the cards to him, he’s on a boat, on a ship, how many people can be on this aircraft carrier?” said Laura Landerman-Garber, Founder, Military Holiday Card Challenge.
That year, they delivered 17,000 holiday cards to service members aboard the ship.
“I got a letter from a medic saying she was on duty that night, Christmas Eve, and they sat around and read cards, so it just was great,” added Landerman-Garber.
She created a non-profit, holiday cards for the military challenge, to enlist help from across the county.
This year cards have come in from 38 states including tens of thousands of handmade cards from school children. Even some from world leaders, celebrities and presidential candidates who joined the challenge and sent cards to the men and women serving in the armed forces during the holidays.
A tremendous reach born from a simple act of kindness.