School Kids Send Valentine Greetings to Troops
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Feb. 13, 2002 The service members participating in Operation Enduring Freedom will know they are loved.
That's because elementary school children across the United States are sending thousands of Valentine's Day cards to them.
International Neighbors Club One is sponsoring "Operation Valentine." The group consists of the spouses of ambassadors, U.S. government leaders, members of Congress, Supreme Court justices, and reporters. Mary Jo Myers, wife of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, is coordinating delivery to the troops.
"School children from all over the United States have handcrafted these valentines to send a little touch of home to our troops," Myers said. "The work and thought that went into these tens of thousands of cards clearly shows our country's overwhelming support for our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines expressed through the heartfelt sentiments of our children."
Children in about 4,000 elementary schools put together handmade hearts and heartfelt wishes. Joint Staff officials said the cards will be delivered to service members in the area of operations on a space-available basis.
Members of the National Confectioners Association and Chocolate Manufacturers Association donated thousands of pieces of candy to the effort, and the National Association of Elementary School Principals coordinated contacting the schools and collecting the efforts of the children.
Joint Staff officials said it may take some time for all the valentines to be delivered.