Sierra Vista Sends Holiday Cheer to Troops 
Casey Hanson 
Tuesday, 27 November 2012 

Each year the American Red Cross provides assistance to more than two million service members and many of our nation’s 24 million veterans. They support military families, active military members and provide emergency communications across the globe. And once a year, they get the joy of delivering holiday cards to veterans, military families and active-duty service members at hospitals and installations around the world.

This year Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center partnered with the American Red Cross to participate in the ‘Holiday Mail for Heroes’ event. Christie Gonder, Sierra Vista’s Chief Nursing Officer, serves on the board of directors for the San Luis Obispo Chapter of the American Red Cross and helped bring the event to Sierra Vista’s Murray Street Café.  

“The hospital chose to participate in this feel good activity as we recognize that it is the nature of people in the healthcare profession to provide comfort to those in need,” said Gonder. “Making cards for our service men and women gives our staff the opportunity to send warm thoughts to those who have dedicated their lives to serve our country.”

Colored paper, stickers, stamps and various other craft supplies overflowed as card-makers set out to create one-of-a-kind cards to show their support and gratitude for those who serve our country. Employees, patients, visitors and community members of all ages found seats at the table, taking just a few moments out of their busy lives to make a card and write a message to our troops. Whether a card had a stick figure drawing or sparkled like a hand-crafted masterpiece, each one carried the same holiday sentiment of care and thanksgiving.

By the end of the day, more than 150 handmade cards were created and no two were the same. On December 7, the American Red Cross will distribute the cards and those who participated in the event will know they have made someone’s holidays just a little bit brighter. With a success such as this one, Sierra Vista employees hope to make ‘Holiday Mail for Heroes’ an annual event here at the hospital. Thank you to all who took a moment to write a few kind words to our service members.