Cardinal Stritch


The Venerable Father Michael J. McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus.

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Knights of
4th Degree
Samuel Cardinal
Stritch Assembly


Samuel Cardinal Stritch
Assembly #205 Support Our Troops

Honoring Our Nations Finest
Fighting the War On Terror


Cardinal Stritch Assembly #205 spearheaded by St. Florian Council #12911 and the Chicago Fire Department sent 560 Christmas gift packages to our troops in Afghanistan. The massive effort was accomplished by the many volunteers who gave up their weekend to sort and package the items that went into each gift box. the gifts included candy, shampoo, skin lotion, shaving gear, puzzle books, pens, soap, and Fire Department tee shirts. Best of all was the letters and cards that the school children from across the State of Illinois gave us to sent to our troops.

Our thanks go to all the folks that let us show our appreciation to the men and women who make our country safe. We would like to thank all the Knights of Columbus who participated especially our State Council , Samuel Cardinal Stritch Assembly #205, and St. Florian Council #12911, the men and women of the Chicago Fire Department, the City of Chicago, Jim Bulcer, the Alderman of the 11th ward, And the Chicago Firefighters Union and all the children that wrote such touching letters and cards.

God Bless.
Jack McKay
Past Faithful Navigator
Samuel Cardinal Stritch Assembly # 205

Thank You Letters from Our Nations Finest Fighting the War On Terror

Dear Gentlemen of The Cardinal Stritch Assembly #205 Knights of Columbus, the City of Chicago Fire Department, and the St. Florian Council #12911.

The soldiers of my platoon and myself were very excited to receive the care packages that you sent us for this holiday season. It is wonderful to know there are people back home that are thinking of us out here in Afghanistan, especially men of your caliber. If there is anything that I can do to show you the appreciation we have for the time and effort you took to send us these wonderful care packages please don't hesitate to ask.

Robert D.
DSC, HHBn, 1 Cavalry Division
We are truly overwhelmed here by the extent of your generosity to us. We have spent the last several hours unpacking boxes and sending items this direction and that, all in support of guys who are in harm's way and far from family. This is not an easy time to be deployed, but support like yours makes all the difference in the world. Thanks again and God Bless!
Eric L.

2010 Thank You Letters

I am sending heart felt thanks from the 332 of EMDG Pharmacy Joint Base Balad Iraq

Your package was very much appreciated and needed. What we did noy use here in pharmacy we were able to share with the patients.

God Bless,
TSGT Dlores Wilson
Dear Mr. McKay,
Thank you so much for the packages you sent at Christmas time!. I received one that had been addressed to SPC Gabriel Becker, via our units chaplain. Though we are in the same company we are a different locations.
I was highly impressed by the wise selections you sent and the cooperation that seemed to happen in your efforts. Please do not put me on your list, but do realize the gratitude I felt at the reception of your gifts.

May god Bless you!
Keep praying for us please!
Cynthia Choo

Certificate of Appreciation
From Chaplain Andrew A. Wade
and the Marines and Sailors of Regimental Combat Team Seven

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Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen,

I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for your care package. Please pass on our thanks to the Chicago Fire Fighters Union, The Cardinal Stritch Assembly and yourselves as you all have made this past holiday season more bearable for us here in Helmand, Afghanistan. We all miss home and can’t wait to get home to our loved ones. Your appreciation means a lot to us, thank you again.

R/S, Halima Blanton
CWO Blanton
Engr Co, Ut Plt
Thank you for the care packages. They have brightened our holiday season. We appreciate you thinking of us, and all the hard work you put in to these wonderful gifts. Merry Christmas and God Bless.

SSG Tyson D. Hunter
FOB Normandy

My name is SPC Conklin, Stanley. I received one of your car packages and wanted to write to you and thank you guys for the care packages. It nice to know people I don't even know are thinking of us on this Christmas season. thanks so much for everything.

SPC Conklin


Thank you very much for the care packages that the St Florian Council 12911. Two of them made it to Camp Dwyer Afghanistan Alpha Surgical Company. We opened them last night during our evening training. The most popular items were the carabineers; closely followed by the snickers bars

We are a Surgical Team and Shock Trauma Platoon operating close to the Marine’s Battlefield. The items you sent help keep our spirits up during this holiday season.

Please pass on our thanks to your family and friends.

LCDR Wendy Stone
USN, Shock Trauma Platoon Nurse
Thank you very much, St. Florian Council 12911 of the Knights of Columbus, for the package. My soldiers enjoyed the items very much, and it was a much-needed morale boost for the younger ones who are away from their families during Thanksgiving and Christmas for the first time. Really, it was also a morale boost for those of us for whom this is the second or third time. It's always touching when complete strangers are willing to go to the trouble of buying and packaging and sending things to those who cannot enjoy the freedom and lifestyle they're defending.

Thank you again, and Merry Christmas.
2LT James Neff
JNN Platoon Leader, 63rd NSC, 201st BfSB
COB Adder, Iraq
SVOIP 798-1005
NVOIP 857-1698
Good Morning Sir,
My name is Steve. I am the Combat Logistics Battalion – 1 Chaplain deployed in Afghanistan. I’m also the Officer in Charge of care packages we receive. We recently received several care packages from you and the Knights of Columbus there in Chicago. I want to express our sincere gratitude to all the people involved in sending us those care packages. We have made sure every Warrior on the base here has an opportunity to receive some love from the states. We also have been able to send some care packages to forward operating posts to give those Marines the same love. We really can’t thank you enough for reaching out to us here. It makes a tremendous difference when we receive love from the states. You have made the day for many Warriors here in Afghanistan.

Thank you again and may God bless you this Christmas season!
God bless,
Chaplain Steve Brown
Combat Logistics Battalion One
I wanted to say thanks to all the Knights of Columbus that spent their time and money sending us their Christmas packages. Our soldiers appreciate all that you have done for us. We have received the boxes and I am going to send them out to KOP and Restrepo sites.

The pictures gives you an idea of what life is like at Restrepo. Both places have to be reached by helicopter so food and packages have to be flown out. They finally have hot food out there when a cook was sent out there. The guys like it and seem to be doing very well. We are about half way through our tour. Again thanks for all the boxes of goodies.

Those soldiers will enjoy them very much.
Take care,
CH Wes Gornall
2-12 IN
FOB Blessing
On behalf of all the people who received one of your wonderful care packages, let me say thank you. I work in the hospital here at Joint Base Balad, Iraq. There were enough packages that I was able to give one to at least every section of the hospital. All of the personnel were surprised by the generosity of everyone that helped make this possible. Some couldn’t wait to open them up and see what was inside. It was like an early Christmas present. Again, thank you and all those that worked on putting them together.


Matthew Zahradka

Thank you very much for the care packages!
332 EMDG/Lab
Joint Base Balad, Iraq
I see your care package was addressed to the Lab, but we all share. The package is now in the O.R.. All of us would like to thank you, Knights of Columbus and the Chicago Fire Fighters Union for the care package and letters.

It is much appreciated!
1886th MED DET – Neurosurgery
APO, AE 09315-9997
We have received the care packages sent from you and the St. Florian Council 12911.
On behalf of 4th Platoon, Charlie Company, 1-128th INF, and Bravo Troop 1-105 CAV, we all would like to thank everyone for the gifts. It is a blessing to know how much support is out there for us soldiers. For many, this is a morale booster, especially during the holidays spent away from family and friends.
If you could pass this down to everyone that has helped out, I would greatly
appreciate it.

Thank you again,
God Bless & Happy Holidays
SPC Christopher Steuerwald
1st Plt., C Co 1-128th Inf.
Dear Gentlemen of The Knights of Columbus;
On behalf of the men and women and the families of the 201st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, I would like to thank you for your thoughts and prayers during this holiday season. We hope that you and your families will have a great holiday season this year as well. I would also like to ask you to keep those families whose loved ones did not return in your prayers as well.

SGT Derek R. Sotelo
Thank you for the packages my troops loved the items they received. The cards from your local school was a great touch. Please pass on my thanks to all that were involved and let them know it makes a difference! We wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!! Love the shirt!

Capt. Tony Barrie
Air Force Theater Hospital
On behalf of 1st platoon, Charlie Company 1-128 WF and Bravo Troop 105 Cav.  We would like to thank you for the care packages. We appreciate everything you do for us back at home.  You all make being overseas a little more easier especially getting close to the holidays, it brings us that much closer to home.  Again, thank you for everything. I hope everything at home is going well for everyone. 

Have a happy and safe holiday.

SPC Christopher Steuerwald
1st Plt., C Co 1-128th Inf.
Happy Thanksgiving Gents,
I wanted to say happy holidays and thank you for the box that our team has received. That was very nice of you. Thank you for the prayers, we all appreciate it as well as our families back at home. I wanted to ask you, if you knew the address to the school where the 6th graders sent us some of there postcards; so we could write them back. I do not see an email or anything for the Chicago Firefighters Union, so I will send them a thank you as well. Attached is our team, again thank you for the box of goodies and happy holidays to you and your families.

Manuel E. DelVillar
E SSG USA MFT Humint Sergeant
An email from Mary Becker that she received from her son Gabriel:
Hey Mom,
We received the packages and may here were moved by the charity that was bestowed on us. We are sending back a thank you package, (not to mention letters to the many children that wrote us). The package contains a Certificate of Appreciation, a picture of myself and the people I work with, and a flag, not just any flag, but the flag flown over our Post when we began our tour here in Camp Adder. Please pass on our many thanks and prayers for the folks "back home".

SPC Gabriel Becker
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Stritch Assembly #205
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