Story by LCpl Juan Madrigal on 12/09/2016Trees for Troops kicked off the holiday season by giving away Christmas trees to military members and their families at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Dec. 2. They arrived early in the morning to distribute more than 900 trees.
Trees for Troops is part of the Christmas Spirit Foundation which provides free farm grown trees to service members and their families through donations, sponsorships, grants and the work of volunteers.
"I think this is awesome," said Katie Wineberger, a military spouse. "I am very blessed to able to come here and I'm not even the one in the military. To be able to receive a gift that I feel like is from God and give my kids at least something for the holidays, I think that it's great. A lot of people like myself can't afford Christmas this year, so being able to give my son a tree which is all he wants this year is amazing."
Trees for Troops works to help families in need during the holidays with a free tree to decorate their home. The event is planned months in advance to be able to get the Christmas trees needed for the community.
"During the holidays there's so many things people need, they forget about (Christmas trees)," said Yolanda Mayo, event coordinator for Trees for Troops. "For us to be able to do this with the help of the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation and Fed Ex, It's very heartwarming and I don't even know how express the looks on some of (the peoples) faces because some of them wouldn't have a tree if it weren't for this."
The work is done for the community and Trees for Troops helps families bring the Christmas spirit into their home.
"This is the way a lot of people welcome Christmas, the scent of an evergreen tree in your house during the holidays, it just says Merry Christmas," said Mayo.