Blue Stars Mothers help stuff a hummer

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Photograph by Linda KC Reynolds

Blue Star Mothers and members of the community came together recently to stuff a Humvee full of goodies including toiletries, batteries and snacks for troops who are serving in all branches of the military.

To prepare and sort the packages for shipping, a packing party will be held 10 a.m., July 18 at the Lancaster Armory near 45th Street West and Avenue G.

Papa John and other members of the Vietnam Veteran Legacy motor cycle club stopped by and gave a very generous cash donation to help with shipping costs.

“We try and support our troops wherever, whenever we can,” said Papa John who served in the Navy from 1962-1966. “We want our young men   to feel welcomed and greeted by friendly faces when they get home and let them know we are thinking of them. We never want them to come home and go through what we went through.”

The Humvee was donated by the National Guard and Mattress Warehouse gladly loaned their parking lot for the cause.

Sylvia Gaxiola, president of Antelope Valley Chapter 14 of the Blue Star Mothers said her husband, Luis, served in the Gulf War and her son, Christopher, served nine years in the Navy.

“When our children joined the military it changed our lives. It’s not like they just went away to college — they joined the military — they signed on the dotted line and said, ‘I will uphold the Constitution and give my life for our freedom.’ This is what today is about- to support our men and woman in uniform.”

Blue Star Mom, Amy Lomeli has a son serving in the Navy who is stationed in Atsugi, Japan,
for 15 months.

“I’m just as proud as my daughter who is going to college as my son; however, I can call my daughter any time and see her, whether she wants me to or not — but my son, it is a different story,” said Lomeli. Often times she waits days or weeks to hear a reply from her son. “With the time difference and his duties, it can take a while to communicate.”

Sgt. Marcel Contreras of the Army National Guard 756th Transportation Company said when he was serving overseas, a package or letter was greatly appreciated. “I remember getting a letter from a seven year old. He didn’t know me but it made me feel appreciated to know someone back home was thinking about us,” said Contreras.

To have a package sent to an active duty service member, please email their information to avbluestarmother@yahoo.com. For more information on the packing party or supporting troops call Sylvia at 661-212-7607.