Jordan Green thanks those who helped Oklahoma's veterans

by Jordan Green

Two words: Thank you.

Thanks to the generosity of so many people from Blackwell and across the entire state of Oklahoma, two of my closest friends and I were able to meet – and exceed – our goal of helping veterans in the Oklahoma City VA Hospital.

Here’s the backstory.

In October, I penned a column asking for donations of snacks, socks, hygiene products, shirts, cards, and crossword-puzzle books. All of these items would be used to make care packages for veterans right here in Oklahoma. Cody Cosper, Dacoda McDowell-Wahpekeche, and yours truly took up the community service project as an assignment for the President’s Leadership Class at Northwestern Oklahoma State University here in Alva. We thought the project would be fitting at this time of year. After all, it is Christmas. Everyone needs to be shown a little love.

Originally, we planned to fill 50 shoeboxes with the aforementioned goods. We thought that would be a good goal, and we weren’t sure how many people would donate to our cause.

Then, I used this space to make a plea to you, my loyal readers, for your help. And you blessed us beyond measure.

Just a few days after my column was published, donations began to pour in. We quickly filled up a room in my dad’s medical office in Blackwell, which served as our donation collection point. Seeing the donations pile up was humbling. At the same time, it was electrifying: To see that people are so willing to give of themselves to help someone else was a powerful thing to witness.

In addition to the endless number of donated items we received, we took in close to $700 in cash donations. While I don’t know the exact worth of the donated goods we received, I would say we received no less than $1,000 worth.

Trying to put a price on that, though, wouldn’t be accurate. Those goods were priceless.

Once we rounded up all of the donations, we held a party to put all of the care packages together. In total, 22 kind folks showed up to help; the work went quickly and smoothly. We loaded the boxes up in our vehicles and got ready to deliver them. We ended up making not 50, not 60, and not 70, but 82 care packages for our vets.

And then came the big day: Saturday.

Waking up early that morning, my friends and I – along with our family members – drove to Oklahoma City with a load of care packages in tow behind us.

Once we got there, the experience was incredible.

Each of the veterans whom we met was so grateful. They were overwhelmed with joy to know that someone cares for them – and that someone appreciates their service and sacrifice to our country.

And in case you were wondering, here’s some even better news: We got a package to every veteran in the hospital and still had some packages leftover.

Walking up and down the halls of that hospital gave me a newfound appreciation for our servicemen and women. And it gave me a greater appreciation for all of you who donated to our project.

There are too many of you to mention. If I tried to list everyone, I’d run out of room in this newspaper. So, if you donated to our cause, just know that this heartfelt “Thanks” is for you.

Thank you for helping us care for our veterans. Thank you for thinking about others. Thank you for giving your time, money, and resources to someone in need. And most of all, thank you for making sure that the men and women who have given so much of themselves were given something in return.

Even though they never asked for it, they deserve it. And you helped make it happen.

God bless each and every one of you.