Some Cherokee County quilters sew up support for injured Tahlequah Marine

Thursday, January 13th 2005, 10:35 am
By: News On 6

US Marine Lance Corporal Jeff Hudgens is in a Tampa, Florida hospital with severe head injuries after insurgents detonated a bomb near his unit back in November.

News on 6 anchor Scott Thompson says his hometown of Tahlequah is sending their warm wishes. It could be March or later before Lance Corporal Hudgens gets to see his family and friends in Tahlequah again.

Right now, his mom and dad are taking turns flying to Tampa to be by his bedside, while the other parent takes care of the two younger children at home.

Hudgen's friends from the First United Methodist Church in Tahlequah are sending a patriotic quilt along with Hudgen's family the next time they switch places. It features a special stair-step design to symbolize his steps to recovery.

Many of the quilters say it's been therapeutic for them to be able to work on the quilt while they wait for him to come home.

Jeff’s great aunt, Mary Hudgens: "He wasn't my son, but I felt like he was my son. I guess that's the mother in all of us, or that's the friend in us, or that's the family in us, that when something like this happens, you just, 'what can you do?’"

One of the quilters has her own son fighting in Fallujah right now.