January 29, 2009

Slice of Bristol seeks to help Bristol military personnel

Over the past five years, the Slice of Bristol group has sent off more than 150 packages to the city’s military men and women around the world to give them a touch of home as they carry out their duties across the world.

But it’s been a couple of years since the last round of boxes went out – stuffed with ESPN caps, Lake Compounce passes and other keepsakes from home – and there “is a whole new generation” of soldiers, sailors and more to reach, said city Councilor Craig Minor, one of the original organizers of the effort.

The idea driving the effort is to give military personnel in far-flung places a taste of home, a reminder that people in Bristol are thinking of them and wishing them well.

“We know we have had success” in the past because of the thank-yous that came back from soldiers in Afghanistan, sailors in the Persian Gulf and many others, said Pat Nelligan, who was also among the original organizers.

The Slice of Bristol group, which is now part of the Bristol Veterans Council, plans to send a new pile of packages on March 14 and is busy gathering the names of military personnel who should get one.

“Let’s share the wealth. Let’s get some names,” Nelligan said.

Nelligan said that the group is contacting recruiters in the area to find out any names and addresses they may have. But they also need help from the community because the military doesn’t release the information itself.

If you know the name and address of anyone serving overseas in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force or Coast Guard, please print it carefully and mail the necessary information to Slice of Bristol, in care of the mayor’s office at City Hall.

Be sure to include your own name and phone number in case organizers have any questions.

The only stipulation that organizers have is that the package recipients must be from Bristol.

Know someone who should get a box?

Send his or her name and mailing address to:

Slice of Bristol
c/o  Mayor's Office
111 North Main Street
Bristol,  CT  06010

If you have a photograph that could be put in the new display case at City Hall, include it as well.

Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com


Anonymous said...

Pat NElligan for Mayor!

Anonymous said...

I realize that their hearts are in the right place by organizing these packages, but I don't think they are being logical about this. These soldiers don't need to add non-essential items to carry around with their gear. They need items that they can use that are hard to get where they are. The old veteran guy in the paper a few months ago has the right idea. He sends them things that they need and that is much more appreciated than memorabilia from home.

It's a nice thought, just not too practical.

Anonymous said...

These guys are not living out of their backpacks, they have barracks that they go back to at the end of the day or week. The letters we have gotten from Slice of Bristol recipients in Iraq and Afghanistan over the years were so heartwarming in their gratitude, you would not believe it. Many of them said getting a "slice of Bristol" cheered them up immensely, and their squad mates said they wish they came from a town that cared about them that much.