Like most posts in the Department of France, Post GR06, Stuttgart, Germany, has seen COVID disrupt most of their plans this past year. As it approached the holidays, they were faced with the reality that they would be unable to gather socially and celebrate their comradeship. Seeking an alternative way to help keep their post connected, they chose to do a service project instead.
While COVID has changed many things in our lives, it has not changed the basic needs of U.S. and coalition personnel evacuated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center (LRMC). Too often, those evacuees arrive with little more than the clothes on their back. To help bridge those needs, chaplains at LRMC started The Chaplain’s Clothing Closet in 2001. This non-funded humanitarian entity provides a variety of new essential clothing and comfort items to those evacuated to LRMC for treatment. The Chaplain’s Closet relies on generous donations to provide those items.
On 5 and 6 December the post set up outside the Post Exchange located on Panzer Barracks and asked the Stuttgart military community to support the Chaplain's Closet through the donation of new clothing and comfort items. The community responded and demonstrated their extreme generosity. Post GR06 members collected almost 1,500 items over the course of the weekend. Taking three vehicles to transport the combined donation to LRMC, the donations included approximately 625 clothing items, 31 pairs of footwear, 182 disposable and reusable masks, and over 600 comfort items.
Members of Post GR06 convoyed to LRMC on 11 December to make the donation to the Chaplain's Closet. LTC Leslie Forbes-Mariani, a chaplain at LRMC, presented Post GR06 with a letter of thanks and a photo of the hospital. The chaplain told the post members in attendance how the donations would help not only the individuals at LRMC but would also help provide comfort to family members staying in the nearby Fisher House. The chaplain asked for continued prayers for our wounded warriors and their families, and thanked the members of Post GR06 along with the Stuttgart military community for the donations.