One is reminded of the verse, “and a little child shall lead them,” as 14-year-old Bryce Thornton’s Military Care Package project is completed.
Over a three-week period, some $15,000 in donations and product was accumulated to be shipped to a battalion in Kandahar, Afghanistan. From 36 rolls of shipping tape, to $5,000 in beef jerky, to greeting cards, and stationary, and Ramon noodles, the items rolled in.
There are about 800 men and women in the4th Engineer Battalion who should be getting some 760 boxes in the very near future.
The project was just beginning as Bryce and his father, Darrin, called the Upper Rogue Independent to ask if we were interested in a story. Darrin was checking out Facebook when he saw the name of a former high school classmate now stationed in Afghanistan. He made contact and asked if there were items that could be sent to them.
It quickly became a project for 14-year-old Boy Scout Bryce Thornton., with some good assistance from his father and amazing support from the community far and near.
A boxing party was held last week at Eagle Point Middle School, where Bryce goes to school. Numerous volunteers answered the call for help. The assembly line began with those building small boxes, progressing to filling the small boxes, stuffing eight small boxes into a larger box, sealing them and putting the appropriate custom form on. Among those pitching in to help was State Rep. Sal Esquival.
According to Darrin, a postal representative from Portland came down to advise them. He said that saved them $4,000 in postage. But even so, the 5,400 lbs. delivered to the post office in White City cost $7,000.
Earlier Darrin and Bryce sent a box over to the battalion as a test. They learned delivery should be complete in five to seven days. A warehouse has been cleared at the Air Base in anticipation of the huge shipment.
But this won’t be the end. Darrin said there is another very large sun coming from State Farm Insurance that will be used for phase two, probably early next year.
“We are just overwhelmed and so gratified,” said Darrin. “My son has learned so much from this project and made some absolutely wonderful contacts.”
By Nancy Leonard
Of the Independent