Craig business collecting Christmas cards for soldiers | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig business collecting Christmas cards for soldiers

Thunder Run Survival plans to send holiday greetings, care packages to military personnel

Whether in a combat zone or stationed on a base a thousand miles from home, the holidays can be a trying time for members of the military. As much camaraderie as there may be among fellow soldiers, spending Christmas away from one's family and friends can be difficult.

And, that's why people of Northwest Colorado are providing a bit of cheer for those in uniform.

Thunder Run Survival is collecting cards and letters to send to those in the armed forces for the holiday season. The business at 500 Yampa Ave. began gathering greetings from Craig residents during the Dec. 3 Down Home Christmas Celebration.

Members of Downtown Business Association had conferred about doing such a project during the organization's planning for Down Home Christmas.

DBA member Kandee Dilldine said the effort is one that's a simple gesture but nonetheless meaningful to the folks it benefits.

"It just lets them know there are people here in the United States that care about them and care about what they're doing," she said.

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The turnout was sizable during the downtown get-together, and Thunder Run owners Jauneth and Earl Madsen believed the project was too important to make it a one-day event. So, they have spent the past week offering it, taking in 88 cards as of Friday afternoon.

Thunder Run will continue to accept cards Saturday and Sunday. A selection of festive card stock is available free of charge for those who want to drop by the business to write their notes.

People who participate can designate their card to go to a specific branch of the military, or organizers will split the bounty between the United States Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.

Thunder Run will receive some assistance from Craig natives in getting the cards to their destination. Organizers are aiming for Sawyer Smith — currently in boot camp — to aid in delivering to the Navy and Cpl. Matt Nuebel to provide items to the Marines.

"I think the Army and Air Force we'll be doing general delivery," Earl Madsen said.

The goal is to reach as many soldiers as possible, Earl said, adding that a note of encouragement from a fellow American they don't even know can mean just as much to someone in the service as a letter from a loved one.

"They're not really for any individual person, just a 'thank you' to whoever receives it," he said.

Thunder Run will also be putting together care packages to send to each of the branches to distribute to soldiers.

Earl was set to enlist in the Navy in his younger days, though a severe back injury prevented him from serving. Even so, reaching out to the people currently serving their country means a lot to him and his family.

"This time of year, being away from their families, they kind of forget why they're doing what they're doing, and this is kind of a reminder to let them know we're supporting what they're doing," he said.

For more information on contributing to the project, call Thunder Run Survival at 970-620-4940 or visit the business's Facebook pageFacebook page..

Facebook page.

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com.Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com.