Operation Gratitude Honors 26,000 Veterans Across the Nation

Chatsworth, California

Los Angeles, CA, Nov. 11, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Operation Gratitude will impact more than 26,000 veterans in all 50 states and Washington D.C. during a global pandemic with the delivery of its signature care packages to men and women who served our country and represent every generation of heroes -- from World War II to Afghanistan. Despite COVID-19 presenting significant challenges, the national nonprofit will honor the service and sacrifice of veterans on November 11th with the unwavering commitment of volunteers, nonprofit partners and financial support from Veterans United Home Loans and Car Donation Foundation. With these deliveries, Operation Gratitude has impacted more than 3 million heroes since its inception in 2003. 

"With each care package Operation Gratitude delivers to a veteran, we will make a tangible and profound impact that goes far beyond saying thank you for your service”, said Kevin Schmiegel, Marine Corps veteran and CEO of Operation Gratitude. “We will serve as a lifeline and a connection point for 26,000 veterans across the country. This November 11th is particularly difficult because many of them are homebound and isolated due to COVID. I am overwhelmed with the knowledge that, when they receive their Operation Gratitude Care Package filled with handmade items and handwritten letters, some veterans will be experiencing the gratitude of the American people for the very first time.”

Many of the volunteers distributing the Care Packages are veterans and military families paying it forward. As a West Point graduate and former company commander, Senator Jack Reed delivered 150 Care Packages to local veterans at the Rhode Island Veterans Home. Reed stated: “This was an opportunity for us to say thank you to veterans and show them support. It’s a simple gesture of kindness that means a lot to these veterans. I really appreciate all the volunteers who contributed to putting these personal care packages together, and I know they will bring a smile and comfort to the veterans who receive them.”

Colonel Michael E. Lowe, USMC (Ret) Board Member and a Lead Guardian for Rocky Mountain Honor Flight in Denver said: "The value of the Operation Gratitude care packages is exceptional. Seeing veterans open these care packages is like watching children when they come into a room where stockings are hung on Christmas morning. There is not only amazement, but joy on their faces as they go through the many items in each care package, some of which bring back fond memories of their time in uniform. They especially appreciate the handwritten letters of appreciation, as  many of them were never thanked when they returned from overseas or at the end of their service to our country.”  

Operation Gratitude encourages grateful Americans to go beyond saying “thank you” by providing opportunities for their volunteers to make more meaningful connections with service men and women and their families. In 2020, the organization has already positively impacted 500,000 COVID-19 Frontline Responders, Deployed Troops, Veterans and their families by mobilizing hundreds of thousands of volunteers nationwide. In addition to serving 26,000 veterans, Operation Gratitude will assemble and deliver 20,000 of its signature Care Packages to Deployed Troops during the holidays in December. Over the past 17 years, the organization has delivered more than 3 million care packages globally with the help of one million grateful Americans each year. 

About Operation Gratitude:

Operation Gratitude’s mission is to forge strong bonds between Americans and their Military and First Responder heroes through volunteer service projects, acts of gratitude, and meaningful engagements in communities nationwide. More than 17 years ago, in March of 2003, Operation Gratitude sent its first four Care Packages to deployed Service Members in Iraq. Since its inception, the organization has given millions of Americans the opportunity to express appreciation through hands-on volunteerism and lifted the spirits of more than 1.8 million Deployed Troops, and another 1.2 million recruit graduates, veterans, military families, first responders and healthcare heroes. Corporate partners and grateful citizens from across the country donate more than 15 million “Wish List” and handmade items each year to fill the Care Packages. Through donation drives, letter-writing campaigns, craft projects, hands-on service projects, and other activities, volunteers are the heart and soul of the organization. For more information visit OperationGratitude.com, or follow us on Twitter at @OpGratitude.


Colonel Michael Lowe, USMC (Ret) distributes 115 Operation Gratitude care packages in partnership with Rocky Mountain Honor Flight in Denver. Members of the VFW District 5 Department of Missouri assemble Operation Gratitude care packages to be distributed to 2,000 Missouri Veterans.

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