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a Place to Connect & Share 
In This Issue
Deployment Learning Center
Homecoming Learning Center
Bootcamp Learning Center
Marine Corps T-Shirts & Gifts
Please Visit Our Sponsors
American Heroes Book
Operation Cancun Honeymoon
2008 Kick-Off a Success
Drill Instructor's Creed
2/7 in Support of OEF
Operation Sock Attack!
IRR: Inactive Ready Reserves
Motomail to Your Marine
Wear Red Friday
$5 Coupon Expires May 15!
Support Our Marines!
Purple Heart Hero Support™ an Outreach Program of Marine
Team Marine Parents, an Outreach Program of Marine 
Team Marine Parents™
Show your support of our Marines and their families at home! Participate in one of the Outreach Programs today!  Our Marines need YOU!
Support for You:
a Place to
Connect & Share™
Learning Center:
Operations Security
Operations Security OPSEC

NOTE: When communicating online, your Marine's privacy is as important as Operations Security. Please respect YOUR Marine's privacy!

Learning Center:
About Deployment
(from your Marine, with the USMC, and with other families)
(tips, tricks and money savers for mailing to YOUR Marine)
(bills, taxes, legal issues, injuries, notification from the Marine Corps)
Learning Center:
About Homecoming
(Tip: While in our store, check in your Marine's unit store for more homecoming shirts!)
Learning Center:
Local Support Groups in Your Area
Anaheim Hills, CA
(Orange County Area)
Eagle River, AK
San Bruno, CA
(San Mateo County Area)
Click Here...
For a list of all support groups in our database or to find one in your area, see:
If you are interested in starting a local support group in your area, please visit the "Support Groups" section of our website:
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May 9, 2008
Dear Marine Families,

If this is the first edition of the Newsletter you have received, WELCOME! If you are a returning reader we are glad you have joined us.

This is Mother's Day weekend.  There are thousands recruit Moms and Marine Moms who share the roller coaster of emotions having a son or daughter serving in these uncertain times. The emotions range from pride, to fear and back to pride again. But you are not alone; you share this day and your pride with thousands of Marine Moms around the country.
For recruit mothers just learning about the new Marine Corps lifestyle, there will be no phone calls from sons or daughters at the San Diego or Parris Island Recruit Training Depots. For many moms, it's the first Mother's Day weekend without their son or daughter at the dinner table. For the Mothers of deployed Marines, it will be a day of waiting by the phone in hopes that her Marine will somehow be able to call home even for a brief moment.  It's not the "Happy Mother's Day" sentiment she wants to hear, but the sound of her Marine's voice and the knowledge that for the next little while, her son or daughter is safe.
This Mother's Day, I would ask that you say a prayer, for the Purple Heart Mothers whose Marines have been injured while serving and whose lives and the lives of their children have been forever altered.  I would ask that you say a prayer for the Gold Star Mothers for whom the clock has stopped. I would ask that you say a prayer for the mothers like you to stay strong and supportive for one another and for all of our Marines.
Semper Family and Happy Mother's Day!
New American Heroes Book from Oliver North
Oliver North American Heroes and the Fight Against Radical IslamAmerican Heroes: In the Fight Against Radical Islam
In American Heroes, author Oliver North addresses issues of defense against global terrorism, Jihad, and radical Islam from his firsthand perspective as a decorated military officer and national security advisor and current Middle East war correspondent. This patriotic book also pulls in new reports and exclusive full-color photographs from War Stories, the award-winning FOX News Channel series hosted by North. 
From the founder, Tracy Della Vecchia:
The book caught me by surprise. It's written in short chapters so it's easy to pick up here and there for reading at leisure. The tales of heroes begin prior to 9/11, continuing through to present day, and allow the reader a glimpse into the military perspective on the war on terrorism. Though the stories told are well-known to me now, I appreciated reading them from the perspective of the heroes and understanding more about why our military continues the relentless pursuit of terrorists. Oliver North has lived and worked amongst true heroes. I think you'll enjoy the book.
The book is on back-order at until May 20. But by using the link below you can order it for delivery after that date. A portion of the proceeds goes back to for our outreach projects.
Operation Cancun Honeymoon
Over $7,000 raised for Purple Heart Marine and his Marine wife for their long-awaited honeymoon
Cpl Mankin with his familyAt the Third Annual National Conference, Corporal Aaron Mankin was a guest speaker. His words were simple enough, but profoundly meaningful to an audience of Marine Parents.
Corporal Aaron Mankin, a Marine journalist was seriously injured when the assault vehicle he was riding in was destroyed by an improvised explosive device (IED). 16 Marines were thrown from the vehicle. Six were killed instantly and Cpl. Mankin nearly made unlucky number seven. His entire body had been horribly burned. This young Marine is fortunate to be alive. 

Aaron and his wife Diane were married after the accident when Aaron returned stateside. Between surgeries and rehabilitation, they never had an opportunity to go on a honeymoon.

It was decided at the conference to raise the necessary funds to send the Corporal and his wife Diane on their long-overdue honeymoon!   With the guidance and direction of Gunny Bob from 850 KOA in Denver, Operation Cancun Honeymoon has raised over $7000 in less than a month!
(Aaron's story is also included in the American Heroes book noted above.)
2008 Kick-Off a Success!
3rd Annual Conference and Team Marine Parents™ in Washington, DC April 19 

Team Marine Parents Kickoff 2008 Washington DC

Fifty eight conference attendees got themselves up at O'dark thirty in the morning to participate in the 2008 Team Marine Parents™ Kickoff event at the National Mall in Washington, DC during the 3rd Annual National Conference. Joining the team were Marines, Marine Parents, Marine siblings, even a Gold Star Mom.
Major Sudmeyer and the Marines from Recruit Station Baltimore were a huge help in organizing this event for Team MarineParents.

Our participants who sleepily rode the bus to the National Mall, were quickly brought out of that blissful state of relaxation when they arrived. Sgt Major Archie, a former Parris Island Drill Instructor, boarded the bus and in a classic Drill Instructor voice shouted out some instruction then told everyone to "GET OFF MY BUS"!

The Drill Instructor's Creed
Why They Do What They Do  
Drill InstructorsThere is a slang term used for the first Friday after arriving in bootcamp: "Black Friday". This is the first time your recruit will be introduced to his/her drill instructors. Indeed, this is one of the defining moments in the recruit's training.

To this day, my son as well as every Marine I have met, continue to hold their DIs and SDI (Drill Instructors and Senior Drill Instructor) in the highest esteem and with intense respect. Your son or daughter will do the same.

How do recruits move from "Black Friday" to holding their DIs in the highest esteem in 13 weeks? The drill instructor creed says it all.

2/7 in Support of OEF
 2/7 Conducts First Combat Patrol in Afghanistan

2/7 Conducts Combat Patrol in AfghanistanFARAH PROVINCE, Afghanistan - The Marines of 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division have made immediate progress with Afghans here despite arriving in Afghanistan just weeks ago.

The Marines met with the village elders in the Golestan District, arranged for key-leader engagements, and laid groundwork for future civil military projects.  

While the Marines traveled here to make liaison with provincial and district leaders of the Afghanistan National Police, they also met with the governor of Farah and village elders to open the lines of communication with the Afghan people. The visit culminated with the battalion commander leading his Marines on 2/7's first combat patrol.

Operation Sock Attack!
May is National Military Appreciation Month
Natl Military Appreciation Month Covert Threads Operation Sock Attack
Ten years ago May was designated as "National Military Appreciation Month," an idea intended to bring Americans together around its military family with the intent to honor, remember, recognize and appreciate all branches of the military that have served and are presently serving.
Show your appreciation with something the troops will truly appreciate!
This year during Military Appreciation Month we're asking each person to donate a pair of Covert Threads socks for Marines stationed overseas. Covert Threads are the very best socks available for our Marines in hot climates. What better way to show them you appreciate them than by helping to take care of their feet during the hot summer months in desert climates.

All socks purchased through the "Covert Socks for Marines" interface will be shipped to Marines on the Care Package Project™ list, June 7, 2008. We hope to have enough funds to purchase 1000 pair of socks. Covert Threads has agreed for every four pairs purchased, we'll get a fifth free.

The socks are $8/pair. To purchase online for us to ship to Marines, go to: All major credit cards are accepted. Choose the quantity you want to purchase. Your order will reflect pairs purchased; we'll total those and get one free for every four we order with covert threads before June 7. If you buy 4 pair, we'll ship 5 pair. If you buy 8 pair, we'll ship 10 pair.

IRR: Inactive Ready Reserves
New "Questions and Answers" Page 
IRR Individual Ready Reserves, USMC PhotoMost Marines sign on to the Marine Corps with an eight-year initial commitment; four years of active duty and four years of inactive duty. The period of time after the end of active duty service is known as inactive duty. The Marine Corps acronym is IRR.
The IRR, or Inactive Ready Reserves, have recently been issued an involuntary recall.  Marines in the IRR that are affected by this would have received official notice in the last 60 days to report to the Kansas City Mobilization Command office (MobCom) in May this year.  
The recent recall has sparked many questions among families.  One family member posed a number of questions to the PAO (Public Affairs Officer) of MobCom and has shared those with us.
Motomail to Your Marine!
Electronically submitted and printed mail service for deployed Marines 
Motomail Electronic Mail for Deployed MarinesCommunicate with your Marine via electronically delivered letters in as little as 24 hours! This is a free service; it's tried and true and really helps to communicate quickly with your Marine stationed in Iraq or Afghanistan.
Setup an account at Enter your Marines information and mailing address from the drop-down list. Type your letter using your computer keyboard. No software required! Click send, and your letter is already overseas and ready to print to be sent on the next postal truck to your Marine's camp.

The letter is printed in a sealed format, much like you receive a PIN number through US Mail for your credit or debit card. No one else reads the content of the letter; it's between you and your Marine!

Support Our Troops: Wear Red on Friday
Wear Red on Friday
Join the "Wear Red Friday" campaign to show your support of our troops!  We've opened up a brand new line in our online store--you get the quality and service you've come to expect, and you can help encourage those in your community to "Support Our Troops: Wear Red on Friday!"  We've got yard signs and red t-shirts for every family member and everyone in your office! Check it out today:
Remember, all proceeds from sale of products in our stores go to support the organization, Inc. and our outreach projects. is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) Public Charity.

We hope this week's edition of our email newsletter has been useful for you and your family. If there are topics you would like us to address, or if you have other suggestions for the newsletter, please contact us.

The banner used at the top of this newsletter is an April, 2008 USMC Photo by Capt. William V. Osborne in FARAH PROVINCE, Afghanistan of the Marines of 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division as they conduct their first combat patrol with the Afghanistan National Police. Click here to read accompanying story., Inc. is a 501(c)(3) public charity., Inc. was founded in January, 2003 in response to parents' needs to find information and to have a Place to Connect & Share™ with one another during deployments. Our free online services and connections have expanded to support and educate Marine moms & dads, spouses, families and friends and we'll be offering the 4th National Conference in Kansas City, Missouri in July, 2008. We've helped over 40,000 Marine and recruit families during bootcamp, training, active duty and deployments. We've shipped thousands of care packages overseas to our Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan, sent thousands of prayers and letters to injured Marines and served hundreds of lunches to families caring for their Marines at Bethesda Hospital. You've found a Place to Connect & Share™.

God Bless and Semper Fidelis,

Tracy Della Vecchia
Founder and Executive Director, Inc.
Neither the United States Marine Corps nor any other component of the Department of Defense has approved, endorsed, or authorized this service.
$5 Off Coupon
Receive $5 off any order of $50 or more. Enter coupon code JUDGEBIGGER at checkout. Restrictions apply. Limited time only. Visit the web site for more details.
HURRY! Offer expires May 15!
NOTE: All proceeds are used in support of, Inc., an IRS approved 501(c)(3) public charity.
New "Heart USMC" Design! Check these out!