Skip to comments.City Sanitation Dept. Brings Smiles to Sailors
Posted on 01/25/2006 4:45:01 PM PST by SandRat
ABOARD USS AUSTIN, Jan. 24, 2006 - Crew members of the amphibious transport ship USS Austin (LPD 4) received a late Christmas surprise Jan. 20 when several pallets of care packages were delivered by helicopter.
The care packages were sent by the New York City Sanitation Department, a project that was spearheaded by Gloria Coletti, the mother of Austin Sailor Ensign John Holzer.
I am a mom on a mission, said Coletti. She said she wanted to ensure that everyone on board received something.
The care packages included numerous items, such as DVD movies, snacks, toiletries and more.
I'm very excited about the New York City Sanitation Department's support for my crew and embarked Marines, said Cmdr. Kevin Flanagan, Austins commanding officer. I grew up in the Bronx, so I'm very familiar with the generosity of New Yorkers."
Several Austin crew members are from New York and shared their feelings on receiving care packages from their home state.
It makes me feel more at home knowing that people from my home state are working together to help me and my fellow shipmates with all the care packages that have been sent, said Electronics Technician 3rd Class Jesse Jones. I found the packages helpful, not only for me, but all the guys in my shop. There was something in every box that everyone could use. Whether it be toothpaste or food or books, it was all helpful and made us realize someone out there that is thinking about me and my shipmates. I would like to thank everyone that has helped put all this together.
I was excited and touched to receive a care package from the city I'm proud to call my home, said Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Dmitry Lamburt, another Austin Sailor native to New York City. "It feels good to see New Yorkers take the time away from work and their busy schedules to thank Sailors serving their country. More so, it makes me feel even better to be one of them. I'm proud to call New York my home and even more proud to share it with such great people."
The Sanitation Departments flag was sent to Austin and used in a group photo with the crew. That picture was sent back to the Sanitation Department and is now proudly displayed in their lobby in New York City.
I appreciate everything that was sent by the New York Sanitation Department, said Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Angel Ortiz. Reason being is that it brought smiles to Sailors' faces. We are out here on deployment protecting these waters, and we get lonely and miss our families. Little things that we receive when we are gone make us feel like we are still a part of the world. That mail makes a big difference."
Austin left Norfolk, Va., Nov. 4 as part of Expeditionary Strike Group 8. Austin is currently deployed to the Persian Gulf conducting Maritime Security Operations. Those operations set the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment, as well as complement the counter-terrorism and security efforts of regional nations. Austins mission denies international terrorists the use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material.
(Lt. j.g. Jennifer Stephens is assigned to the USS Austin (LPD 4), based in Norfolk, Va.)
Make 'EM Smile!!!!
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