23 November 2007

Be careful what you ask for...

...you just may get it, as our friends Bob and Cindy Connolly have found out. "Two or three boxes" could turn into well over 100, totalling over 2400 lbs.

MaryAnn, I wanted to pass along some good news.

On Nov. 1, I sent around an email to the faculty and staff here at Kenan-Flagler Business School of the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill telling them I was looking to assist the paratroopers of the 173rd Airborne who were in the mountains, manning the COPs and FOBs along the border. I gave them a ‘Top Ten’ list of items. I hoped I would get some stuff and maybe get two or three boxes for the five addresses I had in the 1-503rd IN.

Be careful what you ask for... I have a 12 foot long, three and half foot wide table in the eating area off the kitchen. I have filled it five times, and packed boxes night after night for most of a week now.

I have 55 boxes packed (many of them large... 25 lbs. or so), I have another 7 boxes of coffee mugs with tops, the table is filled right now (I am sooooo tired of schlepping stuff), and tomorrow (the deadline I gave) promises perhaps the biggest take yet.

My staff colleagues were absolute champions, and some of the faculty jumped in, too. I have heard from more church groups than I can shake a stick at, and even a Ph.D. student brought six bags of stuff.

Also, it turns out that the Dean’s secretary sent this email to her counterparts in all the other schools/colleges on campus.

Today, I took delivery from the Pharmacy school; they told me a couple of boxes but it turned out to be 12. (They apologized that there wasn’t more stuff!)

A faculty member in the School of Public Health delivered a trunk-full of packages from her son’s Boy Scout troop. The boys voted unanimously to support this effort and then did it. I take delivery tomorrow from the School of Public Health faculty and staff. They are sending over the collection in a truck (!!!!), and wanted to know where the loading dock was.

I have people coming out of the woodwork with stuff that I have never seen before, don’t know, and every last one of them is keen to participate.

Today, the campus newspaper had a front-page story about all of this (people have already emailed to ask if it was ‘too late’ to participate), and tomorrow, the university’s faculty/staff paper will appear in mailboxes across campus and it has another story on this effort along with a photo.

My cup doesn’t runneth over... I have a damn flood.

America may be at the mall, but some of them are buying stuff for those who serve in harm’s way. My only regret is that I cannot watch any of this being opened by those paratroopers. That will surely be a wonder to behold.

And here's the (semi) final take:

Well, Cindy and I packed, taped, addressed, hauled, and mailed 99 packages between Monday and Wednesday, but I have 18 in the dining room just waiting for a few extra items to top them off. Cindy totaled the weight today: almost 2400 lbs. so far.

The "Silent Majority" strikes again. Great Americans all. Thanks Bob and Cindy for providing them an opportunity to make a difference.

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