Gabriel’s parents, Stephanie, and her husband, Tom, decided to Honor their son’s first birthday by requesting that family and friends not purchase toys and gifts for his party, but to consider making a contribution to the GA National Guard Foundation in his Honor. Stephanie shared some of her thoughts with us about the decision:
“Tom has been in the Guard since before we met in 2010, and we’re about to embark on our first deployment adventure. While the Guard has continued to increase in importance to me over the past few years, it is now becoming an especially significant piece of my life. I think what a lot of civilians fail to understand is the huge sacrifice that soldiers’ families make while their sons, daughters, husbands, wives, fathers, and mothers are on the other side of the world defending our country and our freedom. To think that they sacrifice so much for our country, it seems rather important to me that we, as a nation, take care of those soldiers and their families. I am thankful that Tom and I have never encountered financial hardships, but I know so many soldiers do. There are several organizations that seek to contribute to soldiers in many different ways, but what the Georgia National Guard Family Support Foundation does for our soldiers and their families seems to be the most profound, in my opinion. It’s awesome that other organizations donate specific items to the soldiers on a regular basis, but that doesn’t help pay the bills. It doesn’t put food on the table or a roof over the heads of the families who sacrifice so much.”
Family and friends have supported their request with donations and we have established a special account in Honor of Gabriel’s First Birthday! The Foundation is truly honored to be recognized by their kindness and generosity in such a special and unique way and we all wish Gabriel a fun filled year of being ONE!