Tucson Troop Support Group was formed about four years ago when they “adopted” 6th Engineering Battalion, Bulk Fuel Company A, USMCR. At that time, Company A had 13 Marines serving in Iraq after the Company completed its initial deployment at the beginning of the Iraq War. TTSG continues to support Company A whose recent deployment to Djibouti concluded in April.
Wanting to do more, TTSG became affiliated with the Ladies Auxiliary of VFW Post 10188. With this affiliation, TTSG became a tax-exempt organization and at the same time assumed support for hundreds of Southern Arizona National Guard troops and USAF personnel serving in Afghanistan. TTSG also provides monetary support for the Family Resource Center serving all military families in the Tucson area. Last year, TTSG’s support to the FRC provided Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners to 300 families.
TTSG also channels volunteers to work at the Tucson Veteran’s Hospital. These volunteers have provided hundreds of hours of service to the patients. Donations from various organizations within SaddleBrooke have been made through TTSG to the patients at the hospital. Lap robes, heart pillows, activity aprons, and urine bag covers have been given to the patients. Helmet liners, made by ladies in SaddleBrooke, have been sent to the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Hundreds of care packages have been sent to Arizona troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. The generous donations of residents in SaddleBrooke and Oro Valley have made these care packages possible. The donation boxes are located at the MountainView Country Club Library, the DesertView Fitness Center, and the Bank of the West. Menus of suggested donation items are found with the donation boxes. Cash donations, which are tax deductible, may also be made at the Bank of the West located in the SaddleBrooke commercial center. Just ask the ladies there for a receipt when making a deposit.
A “thank you” e-mail was recently received from CWO4 John Parris, USMC, serving in Djibouti. In it CWO Parris said, “I recently received a care package from your post. I greatly appreciate the thoughts and efforts put into sending service members these packages. My unit will be leaving this theater of operations within the next week; therefore, I would request that you send no other packages to my unit here.
‘Again, thank you for putting our men and women serving abroad in your daily thoughts and prayers. The support we have received from home has been wonderful! Semper Fidelis.”
The women who participated in the recent baking, packing, and shipping of cookies have received similar e-mails from troops in Djibouti.
A care packing event will be held in June on a date to be determined. Interested parties should contact Ginny Van Doren at 818-1452. Anyone interested in joining TTSG should contact Barb Carter at 818-2267. Being a member of TTSG is NOT difficult. There are no meetings or dues. Only a willingness to help when needed is the only requirement.