DILLON, SC (WBTW) – Dillon High School students partnered with the American Red Cross to host “A Holiday Mail for Heroes” event Thursday afternoon.
Students in the American Red Cross Club at the high school raised more than $2,000 for the event with all proceeds benefiting the American Red Cross. President of the high school club, Jacori McCall, said he thinks it’s important to recognize service men and women serving overseas during the holidays.
“We wanted to raise awareness by bringing in the community,” he said. “We wanted to do a thousand cards in our schools and a thousand in the community, at the same time, say what the American Red Cross does for our military personnel.”
McCall exceeded his goal of one thousand cards Thursday night by collecting 1,065 cards; 465 of those were from the Mail for Heroes event and 600 were made in schools across the district. He said his main goal is to make soldiers far away, feel closer to home.
“When you go off to a foreign place, no matter where it is, it always makes you feel good when you see somebody from your hometown and your school or your neighborhood,” McCall said. “Well that’s how the military personnel feel when they get to see Americans come together, write them, and tell them how much they care, that’s why it’s so important to me and it’s so important to the American Red Cross.”
The Dillon County Department of Juvenile Justice teamed up with American Red Cross and Dillon High School to help set up the event. The Department’s Director, Torrance White, said seeing the community come together to salute men and women who serve selflessly to protect strangers is a great feeling.
“This event means a lot to me, being able to give back to individuals giving to us every day is important,” White said.
The Cards for Heroes event brought in people of all ages, including nine-year-old Nicholas Berry, who said he didn’t know anyone in the military, but thought it was important to show his appreciation and support.
“It wishes them a Merry Christmas and people can send letters to them to tell them Merry Christmas because they’re protecting our country,” he said.
His letter reads:
“Dear soldiers, Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We are so thankful you are protecting us.”
The cards written Thursday afternoon will be sent to the Eastern Red Cross on Dec. 5th which will then be sent to soldiers stationed overseas.