Volunteers send Christmas trees to soldiers

8:36 PM, Dec 3, 2012   |    comments
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Volunteers help provide Christmas trees from Gobles farm for U.S. soldiers at Fort Knox, KY.

GOBLES, Mich. (WZZM) - Hundreds of Christmas trees are on their way to military men and women, thanks to volunteers and donations in Van Buren County. 

Julia Brockway is one of many volunteers sending 400 Christmas trees from Wahmhoff Farms in Gobles to soldiers based at Fort Knox, Kentucky. 

"I was hugging those big trees and just thought about hugging my son, but I can't," says Brockway.

Julia's son, Army Specialist Brien Brockway, will be at the military base for the holidays.

"When he was in Afghanistan I sent a t-shirt that said, 'Gobles - It's where I want to be'," she remembers.  "He said, 'Mom, I can't wear that.  It's not part of the uniform,'  He can at least have a tree from Gobles, I guess."

"It's a little thing but it can make a world of difference, because we kind of know where they're coming from," says Genevieve Brockway, Brien's sister.

"It's really nice, a part of us will be there for Christmas," says John Brockway, Brien's brother.

Each tree has a little note from local students and some of them are as young as kindergarten.

"You've got one that says, 'My dad's a soldier, too' or "Thank you and God bless you', says Betsy Wahmhoff Perales, Executive Secretary for Wahmhoff Farms.  "It's very touching what these little kids write."

Brockway's mother is just glad he's out of danger.

"I know he's safe at Fort Knox -- thank God for that," says Brockway.

Organizers hope the Christmas trees make it to Fort Knox later this week. Specialist Brockway is on active duty until March, when he's expected to return home.

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