On Thursday October 10, I attended a support group in Blackwood, NJ for family members with loved ones away, veterans, and supporters. When I walked into the American Legion Stetser-Lamartine Post 281 in Blackwood, NJ, I had no idea what I was about to encounter.
The Military Support Group of NJ is an organization that is ran by Rowan Alumn Karen Jennings, a Marine Mom that withstood the heartache of her son serving 3 times overseas with little communication each time. She felt alone, and knew there were others that felt the same. She decided to pour her heart and soul into the organization, making it what it is today.
Upon her arrival, Karen was bombarded with gift baskets, packaged goods, canned food, and toiletries all to be organized and sent off to their respective bases to go out to the men who need them the most. “When you’re in the middle east a pop tart can taste like a steak”, I listened as Karen explained to me the methods and decision making behind care packages. My favorite tip: never mix toiletries and food. No one wants deodorant flavored mashed potatoes.
I highly encourage anyone in the area that is struggling or just interested in helping or meeting people with similar interests to attend the meetings and introduce yourself to these welcoming, wonderful people.