There are millions who want to speak to their soldier husband, wife, son or daughter. For some, it’s simply the desire to speak to mommy or daddy.
For many, Valentine’s Day 2010 came and went without that telephone call. The young men and women serving overseas – American soldiers – couldn’t afford the long distance charges to call home. But Operation Valentine’s Connection made a difference, and you can, too.
Operation Valentine’s Connection was a special effort by the folks at Free Phone Calls for Soldiers to connect soldiers with their loved ones for Valentine’s Day.
Free Phone Calls for Soldiers is a Facebook Cause founded by Patrick Ayres and Larry Thorpe. They launched the effort while serving in South Korea after finding they weren’t the only soldiers feeling lonely and disconnected.
Patrick enlisted in January of 2008. He trained as a Combat Medic and served in South Korea. He is currently stationed at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Larry joined the Army in July 2007. He served for two years as a Cannon Crew Member and was stationed in South Korea with a field artillery unit. Today, he is serving with the National Guard and working to support his fellow soldiers.
Since its founding in September 2008, Free Phone Calls for Soldiers has given away more than one million free phone minutes to their fellow GIs.
Operation Valentine’s Connection is a special fundraising effort organized by Andrew Ballenthin (President, SolSolutions and Founder of the Blog Off Competitions). To connect with their audience of mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, and supporters of US troops overseas, Andrew created a mini-e-book titled Operation Valentines Connection, filled with the stories of wives, husbands, fiancés, and other family members of US troops. Reading these stories will touch your heart, and show you what it’s costing families.
Amanda A. wrote, “My husband is serving in Afghanistan right now. We spend boatloads of money for him to call home. Some months, we can't afford it.
“When I don't hear from him, it's really rough on both of us. I need to know he is safe, and he needs to know that we're all ok here.