Boatsie's Boxes delivers Christmas joy to Kadena Airmen
KADENA AIR BASE, Japan -- Boatsie's Boxes Inc., an organization dedicated to serving military members, delivered approximately 300 Christmas stockings to Kadena's members Dec. 17 and 18.
Chief Master Sgt. Patrick VanVranken, 18th Munitions Squadron maintenance superintendent, hand-delivered the stockings.
"I think everybody was pleased to get a stocking for Christmas and I think everyone's spirits were lifted for the holiday season," said VanVranken. "The fun part is just to see the smiles on everyone's faces; to know that the people back home care about us, especially during the holidays, so that's what means the most to me."
VanVranken's mother, Gail VanVranken (Boatsie), owns Boatsie's Boxes Inc., and has delivered more than 9,000 stockings to service members deployed worldwide this year.
Boatsie's Boxes Inc. is committed to ensuring that service members overseas have a taste of home as they are away from home for the holidays. The company was founded in 2004 when VanVranken's mother began sending boxes of personal items to deployed troops. Since then, it has grown greatly, reaching thousands of troops.
"It just feels wonderful," said Mrs. VanVranken.
VanVranken commented that this is her way of thanking the troops for the protection they provide.
As the holidays draw near, many service members will be away from their families for the first time or will have been away for a long time. This provides them with a holiday comfort from home. Families back in the states create these gifts for troops with great care.
Some of these gifts have reached the minds and hearts of troops stationed at Kadena.
"It feels amazing," said Airman 1st Class A'sianyque Royal, 18th Munitions Squadron munitions storage crewmember. "You're away from your family on the holidays, where you're usually baking goods and just spending quality time, so for people to realize that we're over here without family, and to think of us and send us gifts like these is greatly appreciated."
VanVranken delivered approximately 300 stockings to Airmen in the munitions squadron and the post office. It is with the support and love of families back home that these gifts can be given to Kadena's members.
"I think it's a way of showing our gratitude and a way of bringing our community together with a fun project," said VanVranken. "To know what they do is appreciated and a way of sending our love to all of you. We're so grateful for everything that all of you do to keep us safe."