A local business partnered with the Broken Arrow Blue Star Mothers to support troops stationed overseas by providing them with a little piece of home.
The owners of Wade's RV wanted to lend a helping hand to servicemen and women on the frontlines. Employees at Wade's RV said collecting supplies was the least they can do.
"Due to the pandemic, they just haven't been able to get quite the supplies that they usually have,” Wade’s RV marketing director Willy D. Smith said. “Usually, whenever they go out and get supplies and get funding, they're going to big events. Well, right now, we're not able to have big events, so we're having a little bit of an event right here. People have been dropping off supplies all week, and today is kind of the peak, and we're going to make it all come together."
Smith said he’s been very pleased with the turnout. They collected essential items like non-perishable food, hygiene products and band aids to send overseas.
"We've been seeing people from little kids coming and bringing supplies,” Smith said. “We've also had some veterans from back in the day.”
A portion of the proceeds from all RVs sold over the last two weeks will be donated to the Broken Arrow Blue Star Mothers.
"The Blue Star Mothers are great,” Smith said. “I kind of wish I could be a Blue Star Mother because it's just such a great group to hang out with."
Smith said this isn't the first time they've partnered with the Broken Arrow Blue Star Mothers. He said the partnership goes beyond business.
"At Wade's RV, Wade's son was in the military,” Smith said. “Me personally, my brother is in the Army Airborne. For me, it's kind of a close-to-home cause.”
The troops typically get their supplies and funding from big events. The COVID-19 pandemic brought those events to a halt.
"They're overseas and they're fighting for our freedom, and some are actually even stranded certain places, so they were scheduled to come home and now they can't even come home until next year, and so we want to make sure those guys are taken care of to the absolute max,” Smith said.
Broken Arrow Blue Star Mothers Second Vice President Susan Thesenvitz said the need for supplies and support has never been greater.
“Every Blue Star Mothers chapter is still working,” Thesenvitz said. “We have not stopped just because of the pandemic.”
Thesenvitz said you can always donate tax deductible supplies, money or your time. The mothers encourage children to draw pictures, write letters and volunteer.
It's an all-in, all-age effort to make sure these troops never feel forgotten, Thesenvitz said.
“Freedom is not free, for one,” Thesenvitz said. “And two, when you put your feet on the ground every morning, you have to stop and think that you can do that because someone put their life on the line for you.”