“Sending Love” was the first event of it’s kind at Fort Riley, with Valentine’s Day wishes sent live through social media to deployed troops. A photo booth with props were featured, and the event was streamed live the past two days from the Post Exchange.
Dave Nelson, Chief Operating Officer with the Army and Air Force Exchange Service tells KMAN he’s heard nothing but a very strong and positive response to the event, adding its his group’s job to serve and support the troops “anytime we can make a small difference in their lives.” “Awesome” was the word he used to describe this first time event.
Public Affairs Specialist Julie Mitchell with the Exchange Service headquartered in Dallas described the experience as “very rewarding,” especially with young children saying “I miss you Daddy, I love you Daddy, I can’t wait til you get home, and am eager to have you get back to Kansas.”
Robyn Ayling, General Manager form Riley and McConnell bases said, “This is a super thing for the troops and their families” and a way to say thank you to troops and shoot their love their way.She described a soldier in Korea crying when hearing from his new wife as “very touching.” Ayling adds they are seeing how this goes and hope to use this same type of event at other bases.
Army Wife Lisa Nanton and Specialist Jonathan Cousins were just a couple sending their love virtually during the two days–with Nanton admitting it’s been nerve-wracking to be on her own, but to “take it day by day–it’s all you can do.” Her husband is stationed in Baghra. Specialist Cousins says he just wanted to wish a Happy Valentine’s Day to the guys in Korea, admitting it gets lonely overseas when you’re so far away from your family.