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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Giveaway Winner

We threw all the names into a hat and chose a winner for the FQ giveaway...

Drumroll please.....




I have completed 15 QOV's (all except long arming) this year and yes, it is an obsession. I have three on my table in some stage of completion, and I have six waiting for destinations. I love QOVF and I hope to make 15 in 2013. I love the mystery quilts offered by LeAnn, Nancy and the Craftsy Blog by Alicia. There are not enough hours in the day to make these wonderful quilts to comfort our soldiers, airmen, marines and sailors. Blessings to you all during this holiday season for all the comfort you help to provide.
Barbara Roberts,
Vermont



You can find out more about Barbara at her Blog   and we can watch  her progress on the Mystery from http://persimmonquilts.com/

Enjoy!!!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Minnesota Happenings

Great news!  We have a new distribution point for our Quilts of Valor - just in time for Christmas.  

Eagles Healing Nest in Sauk Centre www.eagleshealingnest.com is a non- profit organization committed to meeting the needs of our veterans, service members and their families who suffer from the invisible wounds of war.  Many of our military families are struggling and need programs with a caring hand to assist them. The goal at Eagle’s Healing Nest is to help create purpose and direction with programs that help our service men and women.  Their education on suicide prevention, substance abuse, dependency and treatment of PTSD, TBI and other disorders will only be the best. 

Eagles Healing Nest facility, previously a reform school for girls, is being transformed through the vision of Melony Butler, military wife and Blue Star mother of three soldiers.  One of Butler’s sons returned from Iraq suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicidal, and unable to find help.  (Minnesota has the second highest suicide rate among veterans, according to Butler.)  Joining Melony as a “mom with a mission” is Gold Star mother Dorothy Sills, whose son was treated for PTSD at both the Minneapolis VA and the St. Cloud VA.  Two weeks after being discharged he died in a motorcycle accident (PTSD was determined to be the cause).  

To read more about Melony and Dorothy’s Eagles Healing Nest inspiring journey, please read the following article in the Morrison County Record dated June 18, 2012 –

There are nine residential cottages currently on the property, and a number of service buildings.  One building is already full of veterans.  A second building may be opened yet this year - and when that fills it will house 20 vets.  The plan is to have a third building opened later in 2013.  It will be our task to provide a QOV to each of these veterans.  The St. Cloud Heritage Quilt Group will be making twin size bed quilts for each of the resident’s rooms.  If they need help with those, they will contact us.

On December 3rd, eight QOV volunteers made the trip to Sauk Centre carrying 20 quilts.  18 were presented, each inscribed with a veteran’s name.  The veterans were very thankful for the quilts.  Melony and Dottie were good hosts as the group joined the veterans for lunch.  Al Johnson took many photos including the one shown here.  During their visit Dottie asked if she could pay us to make 2 quilts for her young grandsons.  As mentioned earlier, Dottie lost her son to PTSD 3 years and 5 months ago and would like the quilts in his memory for his children.  We unanimously agreed to make the quilts without payment.  

Once again, thank you to everyone who volunteers their time and expertise in the making of Quilts of Valor.  It truly is a rewarding effort.  Merry Christmas!

Submitted by Marcia Stevens

Monday, December 17, 2012

A Rewarding time in Alaska



During a month-long exhibit held at the Dorothy G Page Museum in Wasilla, Alaska hundreds of visitors were given the opportunity to learn more about the QOVF mission. DVD’s showing quilts and wartime scenes played continuously throughout the days. On some days signature quilt blocks were sewn plus two quilt tops were available for visitors to sign. Many war veterans stopped in to view the display and tell stories of their service to our country. Boy and Girl Scout troops visited the exhibit to learn more about our military’s work, too.

In the last few days I've presented or sent nine QOV's to their new homes. It's always rewarding to see the smiles on the faces of the recipients.

Two quilts were sent to Ft. Wainwright, Alaska, to comfort soldiers injured with an IED exploded near their vehicle in Afghanistan earlier this year. Two other quilts, made by Fairbanks quilters, will also be presented to the head surgeon of the unit and a medic tonight. These quilts are finding their new homes due to the teamwork of a father in Idaho who contacted Idaho coordinator Sharon L. She in turn contacted me on the same day that I'd learned of a new group forming in the Fairbanks area. They had two quilts to be presented. That group leader, who lives just 2 miles from Ft. Wainwright gates, personally handed these soldiers their Quilts of Valor at a dinner that included her pastor and two other quilters. Divine Intervention, Serendipity or Teamwork; call it what you like, this shows how well the QOVF process works across the miles.

Last Thursday evening I was able to surprise an 8-year Navy veteran with a QOV during our local guild's Christmas party. Although she didn't have "boots on the ground" she was instrumental in transmitting pertinent info to the troops in the early days OIF.


Monday was the day a WWII veteran, one of only three survivors from a sinking ship, received his quilt. This picture was taken at the traveling Viet Nam Wall this last year when this WWII veteran visited to place flowers at the wall in honor of our fallen service members.


After a friendly and interesting visit, he asked if one of his close friends, a Viet Nam veteran still dealing with war demons might receive a quilt, also. That one will be presented later this week.

Today, Tuesday, an Army Sergeant, disabled now as a result of an injury in Iraq, was personally presented a quilt. At the same time she was given the opportunity to choose quilts for three soldiers she credits with saving her life. She says that together, the four of them have served our country for over 100 years! I’ll mail out those three quilts tomorrow, with hopes they arrive at their new homes in time for Christmas.


Overall, it’s been a rewarding month in Alaska for the friends of the Quilts of Valor Foundation.

Submitted by Linda K - Alaska Coordinator

Friday, December 14, 2012

GIVE AWAY GIVE AWAY

The Amazing Leann over at PersimmonQuilts.com is getting ready to post her


28 th

Mystery Quilt of Valor Pattern!!!

Can you imagine - I love all the patterns she has made available to us!!

She will be announcing the start date specifics soon,
 but it is going to start around January 10th, (that's 2013 folks acck!!)

To inspire you to participate,
To inspire you to kick off the New Year Quilting for
Quilts of Valor

We are giving a way a fat quarter pack with 12 Patriotic Fat Quarters!!
Just for this mystery!!

You may need to enhance your fabric quantities some... 
but this pack will definitely get you started.

So!!
How do you win this Fat Quarter Pack?

CHANCE 1: Leave a comment ON THIS POST
*tell me how many Quilts of Valor you helped make last year
 - either piecing, quilting, binding, or cutting fabrics* 
AND leave me a way to contact you!!!!

CHANCE 2: Become a Follower of the blog.
Already a follower - leave an additional comment saying that
New Follower - leave a second comment letting me know you are now following.
AND leave me a way to contact you

Comments must be left between 12/14/12 and 12/28/12
Any comments after 12/28/12 at midnight will not be added to the drawing.

Come back 12/29 to see who won.

Fabrics will be mailed on January 2nd, 2013

PLEASE LEAVE ME A WAY TO CONTACT YOU
IF YOU ARE A NO REPLY OR ANONYMOUS
I HAVE NO WAY OF KNOWING WHO YOU ARE
 thanks ;-)






Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Nebraska Quilt Show

 I thought maybe you would like a few more pics of the NE 4-H QOVs,  as I am steadily getting them all washed and sent off to various destinations.




The kids who make these quilts range in age from 11 to 20 and many of 4-Hers also quilt their own quilts.



The kids who make these quilts range in age from 11 to 20 and many of 4-Hers also quilt their own quilts. 


The quilts are pretty inspiring, don't you think?

Enjoy
--
Sara Kenny
Central Midwest Region Coordinator (NE, IA, KS)
Quilts of Valor Foundation

Monday, December 10, 2012

Veterans Day In Idaho


The Veterans' Day Quilt of Valor Presentation Ceremony was another highlight of our lives. We had several ladies (who are members of the Central Idaho Quilters Guild) attend for their very first time. They're hooked!! We were able to present 20 of the 25 quilts we had ready for the occasion. Thanks to Arlene Thomas for our great pictures. The event was held in Kamiah, Idaho, with approx. 100 people in attendance.




We shared laughter, tears, and pride as we said the Pledge of Allegiance, sang the National Anthem and then "muddled" our way through the songs that represent each branch of the service. We presented quilts to veterans and soldiers from World War II to Afghanistan and Iraq. What a day. It was again a day of so many emotions. I love my job as coordinator. And I appreciate so much the work that all our ladies do to get these quilts finished and ready for presentation. A special thanks to Candy Throop, Pam Bruner, and the many others who helped with quilts, decorating, setting up and tearing down, and for all the delicious cookies!! So many cookies!!!

Our next presentation will be Memorial Day, 2013. Get to work ladies!!

For more pictures go to ClearwaterProgress.com, click on "order Prints Here" on the left side bar. Then click on "Recently added" on the right side bar, then click on Quilts of Valor. Thanks to Gina Jorgensen for her fine photography and for putting the group photo on the front page of the Progress. You are so appreciated.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Quilts of Valor ~ Veteran’s Day Award Event ~ November 11, 2012


On this Veteran’s day, we were privileged to present 15 quilts to veterans nominated from among the family and friends of the Montavilla Sewing Center in NW Oregon. These veterans represent the Army, Air force and Marines and served this country in the Second World War, Vietnam, Korea, Desert Storm, Afghanistan and Iraq. Some are still serving today.


As the honored guests arrived, they were greeted and escorted to their seats by Cub Scouts. Pride in the service to others was reflected in the faces of the Cub Scouts as their Honor Guard presented the colors and led the Pledge of Allegiance.



The honorees and guests were welcomed by Norman McKeague-Foster. He extended a heartfelt thank you to all veterans present, offering examples of the sacrifices and accomplishments of American servicemen and women.






The Quilts of Valor were then awarded by Brett Moore. As each veteran’s name was called, they came forward to be presented with their quilt. A grandfather was presented with a quilt pieced by his grandchildren and a veteran who thought he had come to simply observe, was surprised to find himself a recipient. One veteran shared, with a QOV member, that this was the first time he had been thanked for his service. He said that he could now put unpleasant memories behind him and move forward.

Each veteran stood for a moment wrapped in their quilt, wrapped in the honor, respect and gratitude they had earned. Each was approached by a Cub Scout who shook their hands and thanked them, once again, for their service.



For some of the veterans, this event was their first thank you. For some, this was their homecoming, their new beginning. This event could not change the past, but it could be the start of a new journey.
 While words could not adequately express our gratitude, we offered these quilts to speak for us. For when the ceremony is over, it is our wish that these quilts will be lasting symbols of our respect and gratitude.
The colors were retrieved and refreshments were served. This was one more opportunity for the privilege of personally thanking our veterans on this very special day.




I want to thank Regina for writing this event recap to give everyone a glimpse of our Veteran’s Day Quilts of Valor, and thanks to every one on the MQOV team for working so hard to make these QOV awards happen.

To each Veteran ~ Thank you for your service! This was a night to remember... and a memory to last a lifetime!

Enjoy the pictures ..
Debbie
--
Debbie Turner
SWWA/NWOR Regional Coordinator

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wyoming




Special Note: Image 1703 is of the Arapaho Nation's flag made into a quilt for lady veteran who is an Arapaho (Native American) from our local Wind River Indian Reservation - which serves both the Shoshone and Arapaho. The quilt was designed and made especially for this young woman. She was surprised and very honored by this very special quilt ,




Image 1689 is of an 89 year old WWII nurse receiving her QOV.


Image 1675 shows me, my nephew Matt (who helps me at the shop and who loves to quilt for QOV), and my uncle. My uncle received his quilt (which I made & quilted in a week!!) from his great nephew, Matt.




#1673 shows me presenting my right-hand QOV'er, Chestine Brohm, with her surprise QOV. She served as an Army nurse in Vietnam, Operation Desert Storm, and other places. She retired from reserves as a Colonel! She has such a heart for QOV and helps me 150% in all everything. She will be helping me get a group going in several other communities, as well as helping at the State Quilt Guild's summer show and meetings. She presented a quilt (with my husband's help) to her husband, Dr. Bill Brohm, who served as general surgeon in Vietnam (which is where they met).









In service to those who stand in the face of war,
Stephanie Logan
Region 3 Coordinator for Wyoming

Monday, December 3, 2012

Quilts in the Garden: Lauritzen Gardens, Omaha’s Botanical Gardens


Each November, the Lauritzen Gardens Guild sponsors Quilts in the Garden a weekend of fabric, fun and flora, featuring a stunning display of botanically-themed quilts set against the garden’s fall chrysanthemum show.

For the past two years, the Show has also featured a display of Quilts of Valor and a very special presentation of the quilts to Nebraska and Iowa combat veterans touched by war. On Veteran’s Day, 11 QOVs were presented in a poignant and moving ceremony. The audience was particularly touched when one of the returning warriors carried his newborn daughter with him to receive his quilt.

Many thanks to the Lauritzen Garden Guild volunteers who made and quilted all 11 of the QOVs.



Submitted by

--
Sara Kenny
Central Midwest Region Coordinator (NE, IA, KS)
Quilts of Valor Foundation

Sunday, December 2, 2012

1st Annual New Year's Day Sit & Sew

New Year's Day QOV Sit & Sew

For the past three years, during the hectic days of December, I have taken a
little "me" time to pick a patriotic quilt pattern and have selected and cut
all the fabrics needed to make it. Then on January 1st, I sit down at my
sewing machine with a goal of piecing the entire top that day. To me, it's a
great way to start the New Year.

So, this year I would like to ask all of you to join me in the First Annual
New Year's Day QOV Sit & Sew!

Here's how it works.

1. Leavea comment  and let everyone know you're participating.

2. Spread the word; ask your friends and guild members to join
in!!!!!!!!

3. Pick a pattern that meets the minimum requirements for a QOV,

http://www.qovf.org/content/basic-qov-requirements.html but that you feel
you can piece in a single day. Select and cut your fabric in December (great
excuse to spend a few moments in your sewing space!)

4. On January 1st Sit & Sew. Post your progress that day on Yahoo Chat,
Facebook, QOVF Blog, your own blog...wherever you want.

5. When your top is finished, request a volunteer longarmer

lhttp://www.qovf.org/req-longarmer.html or arrange to have it quilted by a
volunteer longarmer in your area (if you have one)

6. After your quilt is finished (bound, labeled, washed & in a
presentation case), request a destination
<http://www.qovf.org/req-destination.html>
http://www.qovf.org/req-destination.html and put NYD S&S in the comments
field of the request form. You will receive information on where to send
your quilt and your name will then be entered into a drawing for prizes (to
be announced)

7. A winner will be drawn for every 13 NYD S&S quilts, which are
completed by March 13, 2013, for which a destination is requested. So the
sooner you finish your quilt, the better your chance is of winning.

8. Remember that our overseas destinations request red, white & blue,
non-gender specific quilts so please keep this in mind when selecting your
pattern and fabrics.

I hope many of you will join me in kicking off 2013 by making a New Year's
Day Quilt of Valor to provide honor and comfort to a service member touched
by war...

Sincerely,

Marcella Pirner-Cormier
Destination Coordinator | Region 10 MA Coordinator
Quilts of Valor Foundation


<http://www.qovf.org/> www.QOVF.org

The Quilts of Valor Foundation is a non-profit organization established and
operated in accordance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Friday, November 30, 2012

A Thank you


Karen,

Thank you and everyone involved in this organization. I returned from Afghanistan as part of the NTM-A group in MN and received one of the wonderful quilts. I am always amazed and humbled by the support given to the soldiers and your group is especially thoughtful. The quilt is already being well used and will continue to grace my living room. Thank you again for all that you do for soldiers and God Bless.

MAJ Kip F.
MN Army National Guard

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Pine Hurst Quilters

I invite you to grab a cup of coffee or hot chocolate and sit back.... and enjoy the pictures!!


Hi everyone, I am going to give you a link to the Current News so that you can see all the photos that were taken for the Veterans Day Presentation. All reports from the audience and from the veterans said that the best part was the Pinehurst Quilters doing the presentation of Quilts of Valor.


These are some of my favorite photos from this presentation - and I tell you- I needed a tissue - I LOVE LOVE LOVE the smiles!!










Monday, November 26, 2012

What's happening In Washington


We have been doing a few individual presentations, mostly to soldiers from Joint Base Lewis McChord(JBLM). I met the head of Madigan hospital last week and he told me that 8000 soldiers are returning in the next three months! 

I made and presented a quilt to the elementary school on JBLM. All these children have one or more parents who are or will be deployed to Afghanistan (over 600 kids). Since our war has been going on for so long, that is all these kids have known their entire lives. I got to find out what a Stryker is -- it's an armored vehicle that is kind of like a tank, but uses wheels instead of tracks. Lots of hi-tech video cameras inside so they can stay inside and look around. They had two of them on display at the school so the kids can see what mom/dad does where they work.

A couple weeks before I went with a couple QOV workers to Whidbey Island where we presented 10 quilts to returning Individual Augmentees(IAs). It was a very casual presentation and someone posted pictures on-line. I had sent the link to the staff list, but it seems I have "lost" all my former QOV email. Need to research if I can retrieve it.

One of my QOV workers is a retired, male sailor. A couple months ago his wife called me and said "Fred wants to make a QOV for our grandson". With help from is wife, Fred made and presented that quilt to his grandson and now Fred has made 4 more quilts. His goal is to make quilts for Vietnam Vets. He will be presenting his quilts to a Veterans home near Port Orchard next week. I'm hoping that Fred will coax some of his male friends into making some QOVs -- it would be so cool to have a men's group!!

Next Monday I will be meeting with the head of the local VA hospital system and presenting a quilt to the VA hospital with the promise that we will be giving out more of them at a later date.  

Next Thursday we will be presenting 55 quilts to local IAs from Bremerton, Keyport and Bangor. Thanks to everyone who mailed a quilt or two. It really helps when we need a large number of them.

Then I think we are clear until mid December when I go to Yakima. They are asking for 12.

--
Carol Olsen
Region 2 WA
Quilts of Valor Foundation

Friday, November 23, 2012

From the West Coast to the East Coast


This summer, my wife (Kathy) and I were privileged to receive a request from the Quilts of Valor Foundation to present a quilt made by someone for their loved one.

The quilter lives on the West Coast and her loved one lives on the East Coast about an hour from where we live. The request was to present a quilt she made to Honor this patriot for his service and sacrifice to this Great Nation.

We arrived early and rang the doorbell.

We knew Marty's overall condition (blinded and recovering from other wounds), but of course did not know the rest of the story.

Greeted by a handsome man, probably in his late 30's, perhaps waiting for his fortieth birthday, the Sergeant's broad smile warmly greeted us as he beckoned us into his home.

Marty has been blind for a little over one year now and still has trepidation's about getting around his house.

He had only seen his house once, from the outside, before he shipped off to Afghanistan.

Sometimes in life you meet someone and in moments you feel like old friends. So it is with Marty. His wife was still at the store and expected home soon, so we chatted a bit. Marty said he almost forgot about our presentation of the quilt.

While Marty chatted away, he had proudly poured Sangria he had made when the conversation stopped - we heard a whimper off to the side.

His new baby girl was stirring in her bassinet! We also knew that Marty's wife had given birth just some 5 weeks before our arrival, yet we had not given it a thought.


When a warrior is severely wounded in battle and placed on a stretcher to be airlifted to a field hospital, frequently, the warrior's clothes are cut away to facilitate immediate, life-saving, care.

Once stabilized, a Quilt of Valor was placed upon Sergeant Marty to Honor and Comfort him at life's most precious moment - a pivotal point of his survival for life. This was YOUR Quilt of Valor. From battlefield, to field hospital, through an airlift to Germany for multiple surgeries and touch down on American soil at Joint Base Andrews, to his final homecoming - your Quilt of Valor traveled with him.

Today, stateside, Marty is without vision. He will never see his newborn daughter.
He can touch his daughter's face, smell her powdered newborn body and caress her while he rocks her to 
sleep.

Your comforting Quilt of Valor wraps them both in the warmth and love of this Nation, sewn by you, while it nurtures their precious time together and forever forges a bond of love we can only imagine.
When Marty senses his daughter might be chilled, he gently folds your quilt and lays it upon the new person in life he cherishes.

Marty served a long and Honorable career in the Special Forces. After he retired, he sought work in private industry to go back and aid the people of Afghanistan. This is where he was stricken in the explosion of an IED - again, trying to help other people.

He speaks well of the people and culture he served trying to uplift those in Afghanistan. Marty holds no grudges and has a bright outlook on life. He is, perhaps, stronger today, than before his injuries. You too can note his pride in his assured stance. Not apprehensive, not doubting, ever vigilant for his family and country.

Today, without sight, Marty will feel the texture of the many pieces sewn together in your quilt – those pieces will represent to him the diversity of this Nation, coming together as one. He will feel the threads that stitch the Quilt of Valor together – these are the threads that bind this Nation of many people into one great Nation - and he will forever know in his heart - that you, on one beautiful day in Montana, made a Quilt of Valor, for someone you may never know, for their service and sacrifice for all of US.

Thank you for your patriotism, your kindness and your continuing efforts making Quilts of Valor to Honor and Comfort our service members and Veterans touched by war.

Please know that your continuing efforts will continue to touch the lives of those who serve to protect and defend us all - everyday.

Warmest regards,
Jeff Thorne

Monday, November 19, 2012

Lincoln NE QOV'ers

The Lincoln (NE) area QOV-ers are hosted twice a year by the local Bernina dealer for a day of sewing, show and tell, chatting and snacking. Bernina's classroom space can accommodate around 18 to 20, and the event generally fills to capacity. When the sew-ins first began, we distributed patterns and even a few kits but now most quilters bring their own projects.

Julia S, the NE QOV coordinator does most of the long-arming for QOV in this area and we are always treated to a quilt show of her latest creations. She is pictured with a Just One Star quilt (made from Moda Just One Star blocks we received earlier this year)

Enjoy the other pictures of the October sew-in. Note the use of our "design floor!" 











Happy Quilting,
Submitted by:
--
Sara Kenny
Central Midwest Region Coordinator (NE, IA, KS)
Quilts of Valor Foundation