SG official coordinates Christmas letters to soldiers

by Chris Paulus
SUGAR GROVE—The holidays can be difficult for those who have family members serving in the military, but there is a bit of relief in knowing that a group of Sugar Grove kids are sending cards to many troops serving in Afghanistan.

Sugar Grove Village Board trustee David Paluch has worked the past three years with John Shields Elementary School Principal Shelly Hueber to have kids, grades K-5, make handmade cards for the troops.

In addition, some of the cards from the older kids include magazine articles, crossword puzzles and word jumbles to help soldiers pass the time.

“It’s especially touching to read a card made by a 5-year-old thanking (the soldier) for protecting our country,” Paluch said. “It’s really heart-warming because the cards are so cute and creative.”

Paluch is also working with the Sugar Grove American Legion to send out the cards in care packages to military bases all over the world.

Paluch has already picked up about 75 cards, and plans to send some to his cousin. Another set will be sent to a Sugar Grove resident serving in Afghanistan. Some cards will be sent from the American Legion.

“I can’t imagine how hard it must be for them to be so far away from their family and friends at this time of year, so this is a way to help make their holidays a little better,” Paluch said. “My cousin Chris is serving right now, so this hits home for me.

John Shields Elementary students are also constructing walls made of paper bricks. Each brick contains individual messages and pictures unique to each student. One wall is already completed and covers a section of a hallway; another wall is currently under construction.

For residents interested in getting involved and helping out, Paluch said it couldn’t be easier to contribute.

“It is very easy to get involved, and there are a few things you can do. I encourage as many people as possible to get involved if they can,” he said.

Paluch suggested sending cards around at work or at school and bringing them to Sugar Grove Village Hall, 10 Municipal Drive in Sugar Grove. Cards sent by a family or by individuals can also be brought to the Village Hall.

People may also donate items for care packages and money to help with the cost of shipping. Donated items and funds should be dropped off at the Sugar Grove American Legion, 65 First St., Sugar Grove.