JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Thursday morning was the annual Trees for Troops event at Camp Lejeune.
Marine Corps Community Services Lejeune-New River partnered with FedEx and the Christmas Spirit Foundation to distribute 1,100 free Christmas trees to active duty service members and their families. All of the trees handed out are donated by different organizations, businesses, and families from all across the country.
A lot of trees have handwritten notes from the people who donated them, thanking them for their service. This year they also received a box of Christmas tree decorations handmade from children with letters explaining the story of how Trees for Troops came to be.
There were also Marines from the 2nd Maintenance Battalion and School of Infantry East volunteering their time to help pass out trees to other service members.
Yolanda Mayo, Deputy Operations Officer for Marine Corps Community Services Lejeune-New River said they were up at 5 a.m. getting all of the trees loaded off the FedEx trucks and will be there until all their trees are handed out. They began handing out the trees at 8 a.m. and had a long line of service members waiting to pick one up.
Mayo said this year it is extremely helpful to be giving out free Christmas trees because of the tree shortage and the cost of trees going up. She said thank you to FedEx and the Christmas Spirit Foundation, as well as the people who donated time, money, and trees, and hopes everyone has a Merry Christmas.
“One of the best things about Trees for Troops is finding the notes tucked inside, or tied to a limb from a family or a business, and they’re hand-written notes,” Mayo said. Thank you for your service, thank you for your time, thank you for what you do. These individuals truly are grateful to our troops and what they do every day.”
For more information about the Christmas Spirit Foundation and the Trees for Troops program, visit https://www.christmasspiritfoundation.org/.