For the fifteenth year in a row, DHL Express is delivering hundreds of fresh-cut Christmas trees, Hanukkah menorahs, holiday decorations, letters, and gifts to American military personnel stationed abroad.
The logistics company’s massive Operation Holiday Cheer haul, organized in partnership with Long Island Nursery and other New York organizations, will arrive at U.S. military bases in Afghanistan, Bahrain and Kuwait in time for the holidays to provide men and women serving their country with the spirit of home.
Operation Holiday Cheer kicked off on Monday, Dec. 3, with a celebration at Long Island-based Dees’ Nursery. Local community and veterans’ groups, schools and Nassau County dignitaries were present—as was great cargo carrier, Santa himself. Local schoolchildren and the Girl Scouts of Nassau County read aloud letters they wrote to soldiers, and the USO Show Troupe performed a variety of holiday and patriotic songs.
From Dees’, a police motorcade led the cargo to the DHL Gateway facility at JFK International Airport, where DHL employees, members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), military and law enforcement personnel, and members of the community loaded it onto a DHL aircraft. After a quick stop at the DHL Americas Hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport (CVG), a DHL 777 aircraft traveling nonstop to the Middle East will deliver the special holiday cargo directly to servicemen and women.
The holiday trees and gifts represent donations by local businessmen and community organizations, including the Lt. Dennis W Zilinski Memorial Fund, Dees’ Nursery, Adelis International Security, Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon and VFW Proctor-Hopson Post 1896.
Since 2004, DHL Operation Holiday Cheer has shipped more than 10,500 trees, provided by Dees’ Christmas tree farm in Maine, along with the thousands of decorations, gifts and menorahs.
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