Trees for Troops program delivers 605 trees for service members, their families
Story by Jess Dupree, Maneuver Center of Excellence, Fort Benning Public Affairs
Photos by Patrick Albright, Maneuver Center of Excellence, Fort Benning Public Affairs
FORT BENNING, Ga. (Dec. 7, 2017) – Service members and their Families began lining up at Wetherby Field here early Dec. 5 to pick out their trees for the holiday season courtesy of the Trees for Troops program.
Trees for Troops, a part of the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation, provides free farm-grown trees from across the United States to active-duty military members through a network of donations, volunteers and sponsors.
Soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment; 30th Adjutant General Reception Battalion; and employees from the FedEx Care Atlanta Team unloaded the trees delivered by FedEx volunteers at 8 a.m. They began distributing and loading trees onto recipients’ cars soon after.
FedEx, which has participated in Trees for Troops for 11 years, delivered trees to Fort Benning and brought volunteers to help facilitate the event.
“The Trees for Troops program is about more than just delivering trees – we are delivering a piece of the Christmas spirit to our U.S. military and their Families,” said Mike Ducker, president and CEO of FedEx Freight.
Marvin Hill, project manager at FedEx Freight and a former recipient of a Trees for Troops holiday tree, said he was proud to have the opportunity to give back to those still serving.
“The Soldiers spend a lot of time committed to the mission and doing the business of the United States of America,” he said. “This allows them to take a pause and just enjoy the most wonderful time of the year with their Families.”
Each tree is tagged with a hand-written note from children in the area where the tree was farmed. Most tags consist of short words of gratitude, holiday cheer.
“I’d like to say thank you to the people who donated the trees, and especially to Logan who wrote this awesome card here,” said Staff Sgt. Ian Vawter, a drill sergeant with A Company, 1st Battalion, 50th Infantry Regiment.
Fort Benning hosts a Trees for Troops event annually.
To see more photos from this event, visit www.fortbenningphotos.com/Ceremonies-and-Events/Off-Post-Events/2017-Community-Events/2017-12-04-Trees-For-Troops.