February Monthly Newsletter 2013


Debbie Remembers Chris Kyle: American Sniper

January brought me into another New Year filled with so much to be grateful for and look forward to. I had the opportunity to be part of Warrior Appreciation Night in Las Vegas in conjunction with Shot Show 2013, an annual tradeshow for the shooting, hunting, and firearms industry.

Any day that I am able to greet, thank and love on our troops who have fought through the ages is a great day for me! I heard so many amazing stories from our warriors who have sacrificed so much for me, for you, for America. Many of those in attendance were our wounded warriors who left pieces on the battlefield and have returned home determined to not give up and to persevere and become the best they can be with the difficulties that confront them as they adjust to their new “normal.”

Debbie and Chris Kyle at his Home in Texas

I was blessed by spending three packed days at Shot Show with one of my “adopted boys,” Chris Kyle the author of the best seller “American Sniper.” Unimaginably, Chris’s life ended tragically along with his close friend, Chad Littlefield at a Texas gun range on Saturday, February 2, 2013.

Chris Kyle  April 8, 1974 – February 2, 2013

Chris was the most lethal sniper in history, but beyond that he was a loving father and husband.  He dedicated his book, “American Sniper”  to my son, Marc and another teammate who died Ryan Job.  Marc’s final gift to me was his teammates and I’m blessed to have each one of them in my lives and experience their love.

When I attended events with Chris, it wouldn’t be unusual to hear him shout across the aisle “Hey Momma” as he introduced me to another patriot who wanted to say hello and thank me for Marc’s sacrifice.

I am so moved and blessed by Chris’s generosity and love and his death is a soul crushing loss for me personally and for all who knew and loved him. Our Navy SEALs are as President Bush told me “The elite of the elite” yet these are some of the most compassionate men I have ever met in my life.

So as we look forward to February, a month that celebrates love, let’s remember to shower our love and gratitude on our warrior and their families. They have basically signed a blank check and are willing to give up their lives for our freedoms, just as my son did.

To each one of you who are serving or have served and your families I say THANK YOU and am sending lots of hugs and love your way. As a nation we can never repay the debt we owe you. YOU ARE LOVED!

For Chris, I can only hope that Marc and Ryan greeted you at heaven’s gate to thank you personally and embrace you in the brotherly love and camaraderie shared by all warriors. Chris’s life was well lived even as it was cut woefully short. I will hold you in my heart and will be forever thankful for your presence in my life.

Forever Grateful,
Debbie Lee


Local Students Share their Love for Valentine’s Day!

Thanks to the generosity of students from St. Philomene School, Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary School,   Saint Joseph School,   Victory Christian School and Capital Christian School, all Sacramento local area elementary schools, our February care packages will include hand-made Valentine’s cards full of love and support for our troops.

We wanted to make sure this Valentine’s Day our troops would be treated to some extra special packages. We sent out a call to area schools asking them to take part in a project to bring some heart-felt love to our troops and these five schools answered the call in a big way.

Troops love to receive care packages full of goodies from home, but time and time again, we hear about how these troops treasure the notes of support that are included long after the last cookie is munched and the last bit of beef jerky is nothing but a memory.  Troops often carry these reminders of loving support with them in their personal packs, that’s just how highly valued they are.

According to Sr. Maria Rose, O.P, principle of PBVM,   “during Catholic School’s week we had a ‘patriotic day’ in which the students made these cards. Thank you for giving this opportunity to our students!”  Several of the schools, including Capital Christian School were so excited they personally delivered their Valentine’s cards right to our office on Folsom Blvd., where they were treated to a quick tour thanks to MAF’s Outreach Director, Scott Raab and got to see our packages as they were being prepared for shipment to or troops.

“Our students had fun making them. Thank you.” beamed Katie Nelson, Elementary Principle of Capital Christian School.

“On Friday, January 25 our whole school got together to make Valentines’ Day cards.  We are a small school, 101 students.  Thank you again.” said Gretchen Novis, of St. Philomene School.

Thanks to all the schools who participated, MAF is so grateful to them for the extra special Valentine’s our troops will receive.

Registering a Soldier is Easy

Registering a soldier to receive support packages is easy. If you have the address of someone deployed on active military duty, click here for our Military Sign-Up Center or copy this link  http://www.moveamericaforward.org/soldier-sign-up/  and e-mail it to them so they can sign-up themselves. Once signed up they’ll be eligible to receive packages and messages of support from caring fellow Americans.

MAF is now a Proud Member of the
Inter-Service Family Assistance Committee (ISFAC)

Captain Woolard, Commander Base Alameda;
Deborah Burrow, Family Assistance Specialist;
Scott Raab
, MAF Outreach Director;
Danny Gonzalez
MAF Communications Director

Move America Forward accepted an invitation from the Red Cross to take part in the Northern California Inter-Service Family Assistance Committee (ISFAC) Quarterly Meeting. ISFAC (Inter-Service Family Assistance Committee) is a voluntary Military cooperative partnership, organized to provide multi-service networking for training and assistance, to ensure Total Force Family Readiness. The event headed up by Deborah Burrow is to bring agencies offering various resources and information together to assist Military personnel and their Families in the Northern California region.

Mrs. Burrow welcomed MAF as its newest member at the January Meeting on Coast Guard Island, Base Alameda. “Thanks so much for attending our ISFAC meeting and being a speaker. Your program is wonderful and I know you will be a great resource and support for our troops.”

“Officially joining ISFAC is just one more way we are able to support the troops” said Scott Raab, Director of Outreach. “We are committed to helping as many troops as possible cooperating with ISFAC, and all the great service organizations, like the Red Cross, who make up their membership.”

Have a Heart for Valentine’s Day!

Take time to share your love with one of our thousands of deployed troops this Valentine’s Day. To make our Valentine’s package even more special MAF will include yummy Valentine’s candy conversation hearts and extra special home-made Valentine’s cards provided by local area school children in addition to our regular great treats like Oreo cookies, premium beef jerky, Jelly Belly jelly beans, locally roasted and ground fresh coffee and much more.  Everyone loves to get a reminder on Valentine’s Day that they are loved, let’s take the time to give some of that love to our troops!

It’s easy to do and our Valentine’s packages start at a super affordable $24.99.

Monthly Smiles Club Keeps Morale High Year Round

Here’s an easy way to keep those smiles coming all year long – join the Move America Forward Monthly Smiles Club. Simply provide us with your monthly budget, and a little information from you and we do the rest. That’s all there is to it. Then you’ll know each month you’ve put a smile on a soldier’s face.

We can also set up programs that send packages out for all the different holidays through the year. We have members who send out packages for Easter, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, and others who send out packages every other month or even quarterly. We’re here to help with whatever you or your company, group or organization wants to do to support the troops. There’s no obligation, and you can stop sending packages at any time.

Soldiers Send Thanks

Here’s a thank you we just received from a soldier who got a package through Move America Forward, as you can see, it really meant a great deal!

If you have a question or would like additional information, contact Lisa Baron, our

Monthly Smiles Director at LisaBaron@MoveAmericaForward.org.

MAF Troop Bowl a Big Success

Just as the Baltimore Ravens pulled off an exciting 34-31 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in this year’s Super Bowl, MAF fans participating in our Super Bowl Troop Bowl package drive gave the victory to our Ravens fans who beat out the 49er supporters by the thin margin of 2%. Although it was all in fun, it’s great to see our sports fans come out to support our best team ever, our deployed troops.  Thanks Troop Bowl fans, you are all winners in our books!


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