Hundreds of Christmas gifts grown in Northeast Wisconsin are headed to Texas, to make the holidays brighter for members of our military. As Kris Schuller reports they are Trees for Troops, a nationwide effort to remember and thank those who serve.
In the Lambeau Field parking lot – an assembly line of sorts as Christmas tree growers from Northeast Wisconsin drop off their annual donations for the Trees for Troops program.
“Without them we couldn’t celebrate Christmas the way we do today and it’s a good way of saying thank you,” said Dave Vander Velden of Whispering Pines Tree Farm.
This is the thirteenth year for the program which has gone nationwide. Monday growers from our area will donate about 200 trees.
“I appreciate what they do so much, the sacrifice they make, being away from their family and the service they provide us. So, if I can provide a couple Christmas trees that’s great,” said Pat Schroeder of North Countree Christmas.
Since 2005 U.S. growers have been providing trees for the program. This year Wisconsin farmers are donating 600 of some 17,000 trees being delivered to over 60 military bases in the U.S. and overseas.
“Think about being at a military base away from your family and trying to celebrate Christmas. A Christmas tree just makes it all happen,” said Schroeder.
Schroeder has been donating his trees for many years, just like all these growers from Waldo, Oconto and Luxemburg.
“The military families across the United States, they sacrifice so much,” said Shawn McDonough of Bay View Tree Farm.
Christmas trees now headed to three military bases in Texas, creating happy holidays for heroes away from home.