After returning to the States from my fourth deployment in 2012, the kind folks at the Texoma Health Foundation (THF) and Reba’s Ranch House hosted an event honoring the service of another Texoma soldier and myself. THF picked up air travel costs for my wife, daughter, and me to enable our presence. They and others in the local community collected donations and gifts from organizations around Grayson County and southern Oklahoma, amounting to roughly $1500 in value. Local leaders and representatives to our state and federal legislatures presented gifts and thanks. Former Grayson County Judge Drue Bynum even arranged for the First Cavalry Division’s impressive Horse Detachment to travel up from Fort Hood for a demonstration. I was deeply moved by the community’s outreach and care. Soldiers so often hear “Thank you for your service,” and we tend to accept that it’s offered sincerely. This combination of gifts and honors, though, went so far above and beyond and made an unforgettable impression on me.

In an attempt to repay some of that hometown goodwill, I made a donation to Reba’s Ranch House. Reba’s Ranch House hosts family members and friends of those being treated at area hospitals, paid for by donations. I hope you’ll go to the donation website and offer some small help, too.

—Drew Dornstadter

Major, Foreign Area Officer, U.S. Army
Executive Officer, Europe Eurasia Regional Center
Defense Intelligence Agency