January 25, 2008

Warming up wounded troops with pajama drive, a Va. Guardsman helps comfort those hospitalized in Iraq

Courtesy of the Richmond Times Dispatch

First it was blankets. Now it's pajamas. A Virginia Army National Guard Soldier stationed in Iraq is collecting warm pj's for the Soldiers hospitalized in Baghdad.

In visiting the Army hospital, Chief Warrant Officer Herman Murray learned from the nursing staff that hospitalized U.S. service members needed pajamas and small tote bags.

"The military has taken very good care of us here and there are very few things we need," he said in an e-mail interview. "We can only use so many bars of soap and have to watch the snack foods."

Back in Virginia, Murray's uncle, Andrew Seamons Jr. of Powhatan County, himself an Army veteran, picked up the challenge. The retired Federal Reserve employee has written to businesses, enlisted his American Legion and VFW posts, talked to neighbors, e-mailed organizations and used word of mouth to get the word out, Seamons said -- and collected hundreds of items for his efforts.

So far, supporters have sent 268 pairs of pajamas and 123 tote bags, according to Murray. Large and extra-large pajama bottoms, and long-sleeve pajama tops and long-sleeve T-shirts are in particular demand, he said.

Murray is a member of Headquarters Company of the Virginia Guard's 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team based in Staunton. At 59, Murray is the oldest Soldier in his unit.

Read more: http://www.inrich.com/cva/ric/news.apx.-content-articles-RTD-2008-01-25-0164.html

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