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OSC Reports Final Care Package Stats

The OSC Ministry reports that the final 134th packing session or should I say “mission” has been completed.

I am a witness to the fact that everything that this ministry has done with great success has all been done by the grace of the Lord Christ Jesus.

The successful stat totals reflect His glory from our very first August 23, 2003 shipment to the July 2, 2019 final and last shipment.

Our care packages have reached 1,392 soldiers during this period. We’ve shipped out 11,154 boxes weighing in at 69.5 tons at a cost of $519,730. These shipments also included 1,576 bibles, 12,939 bible tracts and booklets along with 23,839 cards and letters. Now that’s pretty amazing.

We are blessed and give praises to God for all that He had done through our Operation Soldier Care Ministry for our troops.

. . . he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.” 2 Timothy 2:21 (NKJV)

Thank you all for being a vessel for honor and useful for the Master in the Operation Soldier Care’s work.

God bless,



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End of an Era by Kim Hayes, Chaplain of American Gold Star Mothers, Inc.

By Kim Hayes, American Gold Star Mother of Southwest Florida Chapter & Department Chaplain

Reprinted with permission from the SWFL American Gold Star Mothers – July 2019 Newsletter

Sixteen years ago, my daughter in law Kylie (then Zawacky) Hayes hugged her brother Tim goodbye, and he was deployed with the 101st Airborne to the Iraq war. Shortly thereafter, their father Tony, an Airforce/Vietnam Veteran became concerned about the lack of supplies and decided to do something about it. He took up what he thought would be one collection in his Bible study class, packed and shipped a few boxes, and Operation Soldier Care was born.

These last sixteen years, Tony and the Zawacky family have given their time, often their home, and their leadership towards the amazing effort of providing food, supplies, and spiritual support for our troops in harm’s way. Since 2003, Operation Soldier Care has received $519,000 in donations, and has shipped 11,154 boxes to 1,392 troops.

These boxes provided more than double stuffed Oreos (a favorite!). They were a reminder of home and what the troops were fighting for, and an assurance that they were not forgotten.

Our sweet friend and Blue Star Mom Julie Campbell has been instrumental the past several years in many capacities, as has the Scialdo and Hayes families.

Our Taylor and Kylie were involved as high schoolers before Taylor had any idea, he’d one day be receiving packages himself in Afghanistan!

Saturday, June 29 was our final packing day, and Tony Z didn’t want any fanfare. We managed to have Susan Scialdo sneak in, along with Tim, Tony’s son who inspired the whole thing.

Tony shared some statistics, many fond memories, and concluded with reading the names and sharing personal memories of each of the six fallen of the 1,392 troops. Two of those fallen were our own SSG Marc Scialdo and SPC Steven Taylor Hayes.

On behalf of American Gold Star Mothers, I presented both Tony and Tim with one of our challenge coins, and additionally had the privilege of presenting Tony and another packer with a DoD Vietnam pin.

Tony will be retiring soon and felt with the decrease in combat operations and increase in available supplies, this was the right time for OSC to come to a close.

It was a bittersweet but beautiful day. Sixteen years ago, Tony saw a need, did something about it, and was faithful to continue to lead others to do the same year after year. His son Tim is a reminder that you never know the potential impact you will have on others. Tim’s raising his right hand to say yes sixteen years ago has impacted literally thousands of people.

Thank you, Tony and the Operation Soldier Care family, for tending to our troops so faithfully. You’re an inspiration!


To learn about the American Gold Star Mothers of SWFL go to: AGSMSWFL


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OSC 111th and 112th packing for 2016

Ho-Ho-Ho and Merry Christmas Troops

The OSC Santa and his elves are pleased to report that the November 3 Thanksgiving shipment and December 2nd Christmas shipment are in route to their destinations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Germany, Korea and Diego Garcia. We can’t wait until the soldiers see their handmade Christmas stockings that were included for each of them.

It was a very busy packing session since we had lots of extra goodies to add in each box.  In the 154 care packages we included 154 Tracts, 456 Christmas cards, and 80 letters. They will definitely help lift the troops Christmas spirits as they serve our country away from family and friends.

Together the shipments weighed in at 1,772 pounds with a total cost of $4,987.00 with funds to spare for our 2017 shipments ahead of us. Thank you Lord!

As we wrap up 2016 I reflect on all the work that goes into the Operation Soldier Care Ministry. I am truly grateful for all the wonderful volunteers and supporters throughout the year.   I send warm wishes along with many thanks to all of the faithful hands from all our volunteers.  You are a blessing, and I appreciate that you have chosen to serve the men and women serving our country so that they see that they are remembered by the folks back home. It’s been a great year thanks to you!

God bless and Merry Christmas all!


Laura Paul (left) and Lauren Paul (right) our Christmas stocking artists and makers

(Left to right) Volunteers Joan Colosimo, Lee Haddix, Claudine Scialdo Ehlers, Gold Star Father – Marshall Scialdo, Rick Ehlers

Volunteers Claudine Scialdo Ehlers (left), Jackie Scialdo Nelson (center), Sarah Christensen.


Chad Coleman (Iraq & Afghanistan war vet) on left and Bill Conti (Vietnam vet) on right

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Thank you FBA 5th Graders and K4 Preschoolers


With great enthusiasm the First Baptist Academy 5th graders adopted soldier, Master Sergeant Moss. This Christmas he was sent 10 boxes with items that children collected and packed themselves. I guess you could say Master Sergeant Moss will be very popular as he shares his Christmas goodies that the FBA 5th graders selected for him.

Many thanks kids for your efforts and in coordinating this photo for Master Sergeant.  He’ll love it!  You all did an awesome job!

First Baptist Academy 5th Graders

 The Spirit of Giving Continues

The FBA Pre-K kids and parents teamed up to put together 9 care packages, which were sent to three troops in Afghanistan as part of our Christmas shipment. Many thanks to the FBA Pre-K kids, teachers and parents that made this happen…fantastic job!

First Baptist Academy K4 Preschoolers

The kids dressed up in their RED, WHITES and BLUES to show their patriotic spirit for the troops. They also included a Thank You letter in each box along with their photos.  We know the troops will appreciate the picture and their Thank You letter for the Christmas holiday. Way to go K4!

Jennifer Crossan – First Baptist Academy K4 Students

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The story behind the OSC Christmas stockings

For ten years it has been an Operation Soldier Care tradition of sending hand decorated Christmas stockings to the troops. Every stocking is unique in design. For many years Laverne Paul played a major role in this effort.

About two years ago Laverne was diagnosed with cancer but that did not stop her from serving the troops. In the fall of 2015, Laverne was very sick and weak but she was determined to make Christmas stockings for her beloved troops. God gave Laverne the strength to fight through and complete what would be her final Operation Soldier Care Christmas stocking mission.

Laverne went home to be with the Lord on June 2, 2016. For the last five years Laverne, her daughter-in-law, Laura, and granddaughter, Lauren teamed up to make the Christmas stockings as a family effort. After Laverne’s passing, her family decided they wanted to continue the tradition. As a way of honoring Laverne her family and a friend got together and made 60 stockings in Laverne’s honor.

Laverne was an inspiration to many and she dearly loved her troops!

Thank you ladies for all your hard work and for carrying on Laverne’s Christmas stocking tradition. We are grateful for your talented hands!

God bless,


Bonnie Becker (friend), Wanda Capasso (daughter), Laura Paul (daughter-in-law) and Lauren Paul (granddaughter) – not shown Lisa Paul (daughter-in law)

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OSC 107th Packing For The Troops

I am happy to report that our 83 boxes from the May 21, 2016 packing session have successfully arrived at their destinations.  They are just in time to help pick up the spirits of soldiers just before the summer heats begins.

The shipment weighed in at 954 pounds at a total cost of $3,892.59.  This shipment also marks the 9,000th care package sent to the troops.  With 9,000 packages, this equals 114,158 pounds or 57.08 tons shipped since August 2003.

I give many thanks to all of the faithful volunteers and supporters over the years who have helped make this happen.

To God be all the Glory!


OSC Kenny Stinnett

Kenny Stinnett helps deliver OSC’s care packages to the U.S. Post Office in Golden Gate.

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Certificate of Appreciation from Army Field Support Battalion – Afghanistan

Operation Soldier Care – First Baptist Church, Naples, Florida Certificate of Appreciation

Operation Soldier Care Thank you

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OSC 105th Packing For The Troops

Golden Gate Post Office - Naples, FL - Rusty Manes processes 81 care packages for the troops

Golden Gate Post Office – Naples, FL – Rusty Manes processes 81 care packages for the troops

Our 81 boxes from the February 27, 2016 packing session have successfully begun to arrive to their destinations.  They are just in time to help pick up the spirits of 53 soldiers just before Easter.

The shipment weighed in at 932 pounds at a total cost of $4,358. We included 32 waterproof Bibles and letters.

Of the 81 boxes we distributed 69 care packages to soldiers stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq. The remaining 12 boxes were delivered to soldiers located in Kuwait, Persian Gulf, Korea and Egypt.

Our Postal Clerks Helping Hands

Behind the lines of fire at our Golden Gate Post Office work very exceptional postal clerks. OSC would like for you to meet Rusty Manes.

Rusty and all of the clerks at this office Continue Reading →

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OSC Christmas For The Troops 2015

Handmade Christmas stockings for the troops

Our hand crafted Christmas stockings for the troops were decorated by Laverne, Laura and Lauren Paul. Sixty stockings sent in all. Amazing work by some amazing ladies. Thank you and God bless!

It’s was a very Merry Christmas care packing celebration at our 103rd packing session for the troops!

Our 107 boxes from November 28, 2015 packing session were placed on Santa’s sleigh for delivery to our deployed soldiers for Christmas. The care packages have begun to arrive to their destinations in Iraq, Afghanistan, E. Africa, Korea, Kosovo and Kuwait.  We are pleased that they are arriving just in time for the holiday since there are lots of goodies inside to certainly make our soldiers feel our love from home.

The shipment weighed in at 1,177 pounds with a total cost of $3,643.00. We included 107 tracts, 100 Christian magazines , 425 Christmas cards and letters.

Lots of hard work went into this OSC 13th Christmas shipment.

Mrs. Davison’s First Baptist Academy (FBA) 5th grade class sent their final Continue Reading →

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OSC 102nd Packing For The Troops

Shipment 102 at the post office

Shipment 102 being delivered to the local post office.

Our 90 boxes from the October 31, 2015 packing session have successfully begun to arrive to their destination.  They are just in time for Thanksgiving!

The shipment weighed in at 990 pounds at a total cost of $3,640.79. We included 15 bibles, 102 tracts, 50 Christian magazines and 90 letters.

We distributed 78 care packages to soldiers stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq. The remaining 12 boxes were delivered to soldiers located in East Africa, Kosovo, Gitmo, S. Korea, Bahrain, and Kuwait.

Mrs. Davison’s First Baptist Academy 5th grade class packed care packages for the soldier they adopted who is serving in Afghanistan. Ten of their boxes were shipped with our November shipment and their remaining eight packages will ship in early December for Christmas. Mrs. Davison’s class collected all of the items and packed the boxes. They did a FANTASTIC job! Their soldier will be truly blessed Continue Reading →

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