Have you ever heard about three sisters and their sister-in-law who come from a
close-knit family and are always there for each other. When their brother and
husband was deployed to serve as a critical care nurse before the start of Iraqi
Freedom, he said something very powerful "Where are the yellow ribbons?"
That is all it took for Vicki Henley of Rochester, PA, Patti and Bonnie Phillippi of Ellwood City, PA (they are sisters who married brothers) and Michele Stich to rush out and purchase yellow ribbon. They started with a few rolls, just enough for their trees and for a family and close friends. No one took the time to count how many bows are made daily. The total is well over 4,500. The bows range in size from very small for your purse or backpack to 4-foot massive bows for large trees, businesses or families with active duty soldiers.
The second project they took on was lapel pins that feature a yellow ribbon with a star or flag in the center. At this time, they have distributed approximately 4,500. Many family members, friends, neighbors, churches, services groups and local businesses are helping with the campaign. All ribbons and pins are passed out on a donation basis. The more donations the more supplies purchased, the more bows produced the more donations and so on. As the project picks up speed, the extra donations are used to send supplies to the troops. Many local groups have held collection drives for supplies and treats.
Over 38,000 packages were shipped by the Yellow Ribbon Girls and hundred more by groups who joined the mission. We have come into contact with many other military families and have added their Soldier to our mailing list. Cards, letters of encouragement or thanks and packages are shipped monthly.
Our political views are not the issue. It is ALL about the Soldiers who are willingly away from home and loved ones doing what OUR government asks them. They are proud to be part of an all-volunteer military because they know the Soldier beside them wants the same thing they do. Apply their training, do the job as quickly and efficiently as possible and to return to the open arms of their loved ones.
The Yellow Ribbon Girls ask for your thoughts and prayers for ALL of our troops. They come from all walks of life. They represent the diversity of our great land. They stand for YOU. They stand for ME. They stand for The United States of America. The big green military machine has many parts and each soldier is one of them. No one piece is more important than the next.