Golden Ticket

Jim Spliedt, Vice President

Friday, March 26, 2010

Blog #9

It was my last day working at the Wounded Warrior Ministry’s Clothing Closet.  I was met by one of the chaplains first thing in the morning, who let us know that a flight of wounded had come in during the night so we could be prepared.  An older couple and four hard working missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also arrived as volunteers this morning, as part of their normal Friday activities.  The four missionaries spent a few hours opening, sorting, and storing numerous boxes of clothing in one of the store rooms.  It was very impressive to see how much they accomplished in such a short time period.

All of the unspecified cards and letters received for the wounded must be individually opened, screened for content, and checked just in case someone included items like phone or iTunes cards.  This is a daunting task since the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center receives thousands of pieces of mail annually and the volunteers are generally tasked with this job.  I was told when these young missionaries would find a phone or iTunes card, they would start singing the “golden ticket” song from the Willie Wonka movie.  I guess they work for one box of Samoas Girl Scout cookies – a very good deal for the Clothing Closet.

We had wounded service men and women come to the Clothing Closet throughout the day.  As with the other days, they would come in just wanting a few items, but with a little encouragement, leave with a duffle bag full of much needed clothing and hygiene items.  Many of them were in amazement at the generosity of their fellow Americans in providing them with these items.  Later in the day, we had four Marines from the previous night’s flight come in to get clothing, because all of them had nothing but hospital gowns to wear.  Karen assisted one Marine in a wheelchair with a pair of breakaway pants while I searched for a pair of size 14 men’s shoes.  All of the Marines left the Clothing Closet with clothing they could comfortably walk around in.

Near the end of the day I restocked a few bins and made sure there were plenty of duffle bags and jackets ready for the weekend.  My time volunteering at the Wounded Warriors Ministries Clothing Closet has come to an end and I cannot believe how fast the time went.

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