Students send cards to deployed soldiers

FORT BRAGG Christmas is through in the eyes of children whose parents are soldiers, many of whom are deployed.

The war in Afghanistan is just about 9-years-old, that's the average age of most third and fourth graders.

That means kids that age in Fort Bragg schools have watched their parents go off to war most of their lives.

And a fourth grade class at Holbrook Elementary School is on a mission.

They're making Christmas cards for soldiers who are deployed. It's a way of helping them deal with separation during the holidays.

"Dear soldier … I hope you have a Merry Christmas," student Katie Swanson said. "I just want to thank you for that hard work and keeping our country free."

"I thank you for being a soldier," Egypt Jackson said. "I hope you come back safely."

The students know about deployments, about 50 percent of them have parents who are deployed.

Gabrielle King's dad is home for two weeks from Afghanistan. He'll have to go back Monday.

"But we are going to have Christmas tomorrow, early Christmas," she said. "We're going to get 10 presents each."

In addition to sending cards to any soldier, the children made special Christmas cards for their parents as well.

"I like for them to dig deep and do something for someone that they don't know, because for some of the soldiers … this might be the only card that they get for Christmas time," counselor Dawn Fields said. "So, we want them appreciate all the soldiers as well as love their own."

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