The Conversation

Local Woman Collects Clean Sheets for Afghanistan MASH unit

The President of the Roanoke Valley Republican Women's club took matters into her own hands when she learned that a MASH unit had nothing but worn and torn blood-stained sheets to use to take care of our wounded warriors stationed in Afghanistan.

RoxAnne Christley who lives in Roanoke, VA found out from a friend married to a MASH nurse in Afghanistan that he was unable to get clean and fresh sheets for the beds in their hospital unit. "They wash them but they are just coming apart" Christley said. She promptly organized local resources and is now shipping over more than 100 sets of clean sheets to the MASH unit.  

With the generous donations from people in her Republican Women's group, attendees at a military appreciation day in nearby Salem and Pat Kennedy of Kennedy Chiropractic, community members donated sheets and money, along with other non-perishable items for care packages to go to Afghanistan. Each package can be a maximum of 60 lbs, and the local UPS Store has generously donated packaging services for the effort.  Packages arrive for pick up in Afghanistan only once a month. Her sheets should be going out next week and she expects to have about a dozen packages. 

Christley has had support from area Congressmen Bob Goodlatte and Morgan Griffith for her project along with local GOP delegates Chris Head and Greg Habeeb.  They have all donated money to help with shipping costs. But not all have been supportive.  She was surprised to be rebuffed at the state GOP convention by state senator Ralph Smith, "he said no" said Christley but a nearby man promptly pulled money out of his wallet to help Christley's efforts when he over heard Smith's refusal. "I will help you pay for the shipping of sheets" the gentlemen said.

Morale is just "so bad" over in Afghanistan, "they can get cigarettes easier than they can get things to put on our wounded military services people on" according to Christley. So she has also gathered non perishables like hard candy and hand-sanitizer, baby wipes, and "stuff that makes them know we care about them." They have dirt and sand and blood over there" so she puts stuff together to "make them smile." 

You can reach RoxAnne Christley at rchristley (at) gmail.com.



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