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America Supports You: 'Cookie' Lady Appears on Martha Stewart Show

By Sgt. Sara Wood, USA
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2005 – A South Carolina woman who has been sending cookies to servicemembers overseas since 1990 said she's been flooded with e-mails from people wanting to help since she appeared recently on "Martha," the TV show hosted by Martha Stewart.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
Jeanette Cram (left), founder of Treat the Troops, poses with Martha Stewart and Air Force Senior Airman Natalie Sanchez on the set of "Martha," Dec. 16. Cram appeared on the show to help in the kitchen and talk about her campaign to send cookies to deployed servicemembers. Courtesy photo
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Jeanette Cram, affectionately dubbed "the Cookie Lady," said this surge in support proves that she was successful in giving the message to the American public that the troops need support.

She appeared on Stewart's show Dec. 16, lending a helping hand in the kitchen and talking about her campaign to support the troops. She also got a surprise visit from Air Force Senior Airman Natalie Sanchez, who received cookies from Cram while deployed.

"They brought her out and I just went flying across that stage to go hug her," Cram said of Sanchez. "I don't often get to meet many of (the servicemembers), so that was just a treat."

During the show, Cram told Stewart that servicemembers like M&M cookies, and she was given another surprise when representatives of M&M/Mars came on stage and gave her a year's supply of specially designed red, white and blue M&Ms. Instead of the traditional "M," these candies have "American Hero" and "Thank You" Stamped on them.

"They were just so beautiful, and that was so kind of them," Cram said.

She said the best part of being on the show was the opportunity to talk about the soldiers she supports and the volunteers who help her. Cram has seven local volunteers in Hilton Head, S.C., whom she calls "crumbs," and several volunteers around the country who help her bake cookies. She estimated they have sent about 120,000 cookies to deployed servicemembers.

Cram said she was inspired to start sending cookies to troops in 1990, when then-President George H.W. Bush read a letter on TV from a soldier to his mother, asking for cookies and letters.

"I turned to my husband and said, 'I can do that,'" Cram said.

Cram's organization, Treat the Troops, is a partner in DoD's "America Supports You" program. It has sent cookies to servicemembers in the first Gulf War, Bosnia, Somalia, Guantanamo Bay, Iraq and Afghanistan, she said. She will continue to send cookies as long as servicemembers are deployed, she said, because cookies give the troops a taste of home.

"It's such a personal thing, because you've got to stand in here and bake them," she said. "It's harder to bake than it is to go buy."

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Related Sites:
Treat the Troops
America Supports You


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