Support Our Soldiers


Pickle Packing 7 April 2009 - 25 Boxes Packed

How the Program Works:
Starting in 2003, the Association of the Century's Support Our Soldiers (SOS) program is our way of saying thanks to deployed 100th Division Soldiers and recognizing their selfless service in support of the Global War on Terrorism.  A 'Letter or Box from Home" is sometimes the best medicine when you are deployed far from home and family.  Depending on the time of year, "Pickle Packing" events conducted by Association of the Century volunteers involve packing and shipping boxes with everything from food and personal hygiene items to PX gift cards at Christmas and phone cards used to call home.  Personal notes from AOC volunteers are always included. One of our more recent "Pickle Packing" sessions was in Louisville with a group of several AOC volunteers and some boy scouts that met at Holiday Inn East.  Before we were finished, several boxes of food stuff and personal hygiene items were boxed, addressed, and mailed to 100th Division soldiers, along with several hand written cards of thanks and encouragement to those who are serving in harm’s way in Afghanistan.

Writing personal notes to the troops
From L to R: Charlie McBride, Cleland White (back to camera), John Tindall, Court Clayton and Rick Foster

"Pickle Packing" Hits Record Level:
Our 2012 Christmas "Pickle Packing" session pushed the total number of boxes sent to OCONUS 100th Division soldiers to well over 1,000 since we started our Support Our Soldiers (SOS) endeavor along with over 2,000 cards or notes of encouragement.   Our cost for this effort has run over $29,000.00 for postage and items placed in these care packages or our holiday gift packages. Many thanks to all who either participated by their presence or by sending a check to help defray the cost.  Usually four mailings are scheduled during the year and cost for each mailing have range from a low of $1,000.00 to a high of $2,500.00 depending how many packages are sent and what is contained in each package. The AOC membership*s generosity in time, talent, and treasure of all who have helped in our "Pickle Packing" for close to 10 years has been both humbling and gratifying.  The loyalty and patriotism of 100th Division members, past and present, continue to demonstrate that the Division and the AOC are serving our nation and the 100th Division soldiers.

Signing cards to the troops
From L to R: John Plamp - WW II, Martha Plamp, Carol Harris,
Larry Herzog, Trip Tichenor and Ben Zimmerman

How You Can Help:
You can help in two ways. First plan to attend one of the our "Pickle Packing" sessions and help fill the boxes and write some notes of thanks and encouragement and felt good about being a part of providing our 100th Division soldiers that are in harm’s way. 

Association of the Century
P.O. Box 34393
Louisville , Kentucky 40205

Many thanks to all who either participated by their presence at "Pickle Packing" sessions, or by sending a check to help defray the cost of this most worthwhile venture.

Soldier Comments:  
Thanks so much to all of you for your thoughtful packages.  This Christmas box is the second one I have received, and it has so many of our favorites, like those soft peppermints.   I  am a physician’s assistant working in a small TMC, taking care of the sick and injured on our quiet little post.  Typically when we get a package we spread it around so everyone might get something out of it.  We even share some things with the patients.  It's a great thing.  Everyone wins.  It's nice to get so many handwritten cards.  I think back to my life in Texas and I can't imagine carving out time to do things like that for people.  Life is hectic, I know, so your packages and letters mean a lot.  Thanks a lot for your kind words and support.  It's nice to have a reminder that many Americans still know what they believe in and who they support. Thanks for doing your part.

Read more Soldier comments here.