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Volunteers show troops they care with packages

Close to 100 gather at Newhall Library to put together care packages for U.S. troops

Posted: February 10, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: February 10, 2014 2:00 a.m.

Nothing says “I love you” like a care package of Ramen noodles and a chocolate bar — just ask the hundreds of servicemen and women receiving packages prepared by the group Prayer Angels for the Military.

On Sunday, close to 100 volunteers showed up at the Newhall Library to help the group by putting together packages destined for U.S. military personnel serving overseas or by making Valentine’s Day cards for them.

“I like our community to see how proud we are of our kids,” said event organizer Suzon Gerstel, pointing a table of busy Girl Scouts making Valentine’s Day cards. “I want to show people that they come and do this rewarding thing to do something for somebody else.”

The troop of eight Girl Scouts created more than 100 cards to send to servicemen and women.

When 13-year-old Bella Sigman, of Girl Scouts Troop 3742 was asked why her creatively crafted Valentine did not include the color red, she said: “I’m just giving them love. I’m sending them love whether it’s Valentine’s Day or not.”

Packages the size of soccer balls included much-needed items such as Ritz crackers, body wash, beef jerky, peanut butter, granola bars and cotton socks.

Connie Acevedo, a mother of three with two sons in the military, was one of those who signed a banner, leaving her message of love next to scores of heart-felt sentiments written by volunteers. The banner is included in the overseas shipment of care packages.

“My sons Peter and Andrew are both in the Marine Corps,” she said. “They have received these packages. Actually, they’ve received many packages, and when they get them they just spread (the contents) among them.

“It was overwhelming for him,” she said, referring to the first time her son Peter received his care package.

“He was expecting maybe a box or two for him, but he got boxes for everyone,” Acevedo said. “And they always get them in time. They wrote to us saying ‘we needed socks and we got socks. We needed candy and we got candy.’

Anyone wishing to contribute to the cause should visit the group’s website at
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