Grati-Tuesday 15th December 2020

Written by AHQ

15 December 2020

Hi there friends!

Hope you are having a very happy and safe week wherever you are reading from. I am in drizzly Sydney, getting ready for a full day of meetings in the office as I prepare this.. And boy, do I wish I was just about anywhere else… LOL..

Now, if I can suggest, given the craziness that is December, grab a cuppa, take a few minutes for you and check out these beautiful notes (and photos). I guarantee you won’t regret it.. Alex


Hello Shirley,
I am a serving member in the Australian Army, and I was blessed to receive one of your laundry bags today. 
I would just like to thank you very much for your time and effort to make soldiers and defence force personnel laundry bags.
Kindest Regards.


Hi Bridget,
Firstly I wish to congratulate you on an impressive Hero Quilt! It is exceptional! Your work with fabric to make the Power Ranger helmets/silhouette and overall quality of the quilt is superb – I am torn between hanging it on my wall or sleeping under it! So thank you very very much for your efforts! As a young boy I cherished everything Power Rangers and coming home from a long day here in Africa, I know your quilt will keep me smiling and remembering home!
Because I am not sure what you know about me already, I think an introduction of my own is in order. I hail from Queensland, although posted in New South Wales, and currently here in Africa, working for the United Nations – interesting work and a great opportunity to see and experience working with a great many cultures in one building. 
I am an Army Major who specialises in Mechanical Engineering and operations planning for a logistics battalion. This year I reached my first long service medal of 15 years (I don’t recall where those 15 years went). I’m happily married to a woman who happens to be a nurse. She is carrying our first child. We’ve only just surprised our families with the news this past weekend. My return to Australia, gives me a short time to catch up on being away for the best part of the year, and sure to pamper my wife, before our bub arrives.
We have to dogs, both German Shepherd mixes. They are keeping my wife safe and loved (and a little nuts) in my absence. One of my favourite parts about coming home after long periods away, is the sheer chaos these two create when they see me again. I look forward to the day that a patter of little feet joins that mad rush to the door for my welcome home.
Bridget, once again I want to thank you very much for the quilt and laundry bag. In a place so isolated from Australia, your gift warms my heart and will continue to brighten my days away from home.
I wish you and family a Happy Christmas and safe holidays.
Best regards


Shared from the Facebook page but just incase any of our non-Facebook followers haven’t seen this – what a lovely note;
‘WOW! So stoked to receive a hand-made quilt from Aussie Hero Quilts. It’s a beautiful collage of my military service with the badges of my Corps (RASVY and RAE) and even has a drop bear at the top. Thank you Lynn F, Philomena H for this very special gift and thank you Jan-Maree and Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags) for this very special honour. 
Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags) are online community that have sent over 12,000 unique quilts and more than 25,000 laundry bags to encourage our military personnel. They do an amazing job making ordinary service men and women feel special. Keep up the great work!



I was fortunate enough to have received your quilt you made from me. Thank you very much! I absolutely loved it and you captured the beach theme very well! 
The quilt always puts a smile on my face each time I see it. I requested a ‘beach’ theme as it is one of my favourite places I like to visit. It is my time to enjoy the outdoors, sun (most times), a place to relax, reflect and unwind. I find water very calming. So thank you for providing me with ‘that’ place here where I work in the Force Headquarters in Africa.
I really enjoyed hearing about you and your family. 
I grew up in both New South Wales and South Australia, although I call SA my home, as such, with most of my family members living in relatively close proximity. I joined the Army at the young age of 19 and just hit 16 years in the Army. I never thought I’d stay in the Army as long as I have. I have met some really great people and take great pride in wearing my uniform, serving my country.
I initially enlisted as a soldier as a logistician for four years, prior to transferring to become an Officer. I completed my training to join the Medical Corps as a General Service Officer. I have had very limited deployment opportunities in my career, with two overseas trips of approximately 6 weeks long. 
The Army has afforded me the opportunity to participate in Ex Long Look (British Army exchange program) and also take up rugby. I have been also fortunate enough to represent Australia in women’s rugby as part of the Wallaroos. I’m not sure what your interest is in sport, but I know women’s rugby isn’t that well known. I recently retired after 22 test caps for Australia in Feb this year, which has been one of my greatest achievements in my life.
My deployment will be 6 months long, so it’ll be interesting to see how that goes. So far, so good, and time is going quick. It’s been a very eye opening experience and is a very unique deployment. I work as Desk Officer in the Force Headquarters. I find this part really interesting and it definitely changes the working dynamics that I’m used to. There is a lot of opportunities to learn from other nationalities, whilst also challenging my level of acceptance for flexibility and understanding! I currently work with a team consisting of Mongolian, Norwegian, Rwandan, Ethiopian, Kenyan, Nepalese Brit and Indian Officers. Each have varying degrees of experience, and knowledge and work styles. The Australian contingent is only a small number of people. 
I am throughly enjoying the job, but at times it has been challenging. We can’t explore outside of base due to security issues, but the base itself is approximately 4.8km, so it makes for a good walk. Weather here is moving into the dry season, so reaches a top of 35/36 degrees and doesn’t drop below 20. I have experienced the end of the wet season, it is storm after storm, with big heavy rainfalls. I love watching a good storm, but it leaves the place a big muddy mess. So walking to work is not much fun!
During my spare time here, weekly we get together on Fridays after work with the other ‘five eyes’ (UK, Brits, US, NZ counterparts, and we include the Norwegians), for a couple of drinks and dinner. It’s a nice quiet time to relax and chat about the week. During the weekends, time is generally our own. We have been conducting Australian training every now and then, which has been enjoyable. I still have a few reports to send in for work each day on the weekend, but it generally doesn’t take me too long.
Thank you very much again for my quilt. I absolutely love it. I will not forget the generosity you have shown in taking your time and effort to provide me with memories of my favourite place back home. I hope you had a great weekend and COVID isn’t restricting too much of your travel plans.
Take care.


Good Afternoon Shirley,
I hope this e-mail finds you well.
I wanted to send my appreciation to you for going out of your way to be so kind and generous, it brought a smile to not only my face, but my colleagues on COVID Assist as well.
All the best.


Hi Lynn,
I am writing this on behalf of a family member and I wanted to say a big big thank you for making the absolutely beautiful quilt.
It was a very special day and we cannot thank you enough for all the hard work that you put into making it, he will treasure it forever.
Thank you so much again,
Kind Regards.


Dear Bronwyn,
Thank you so very much for my Aussie Hero Quilt and Laundry Bag. The embroidery is excellent and I was extremely happy with the design.
Apologies for the late response, my soldiers and I returned from the Middle East recently, and after we were released from quarantine, it’s been a busy end to the year despite our recent return from operations.
Thank you for telling me a little about your family. I’ve returned from my deployment to the Middle East, reuniting with my partner and was able to meet our newborn son for the first time. He was born whilst I was still serving overseas and his Nanna (my mum) just arrived into Northern Territory to meet him as well. 
We are all looking forward to the Christmas Holiday to spend time with the rest of the family.
Thank you and the rest of the team at Aussie Hero Quilts for what you do in support of our servicemen and women.


Hello Kathy,
I am the recipient of the Aussie Hero Quilt you created.
I am a Maritime Warfare Officer in training and my role is, essentially to drive the warship. I have recently returned to New South Wales from a five month deployment where I was completing border protection operations onboard out of Northern Territory. I’m currently undertaking my Fleet Board which is a series of assessments to ensure that I can safely navigate a warship before proceeding to my next phase of training.
I wanted to say thank you so much for the quilt you created. I was truly amazed by the level of craftsmanship and I cannot imagine the amount of hours that went into its creation. It well and truly exceeded my expectations, the numerous nods to nautical history, including the star charts and the sextant were a highlight. I greatly appreciate the level of effort and amount of hours  you must have spent creating it. Words cannot describe how happy I am with it.
I apologise for how long it has taken for me to reply to you. I have been taking time to spend time with my partner and our puppy in New South Wales. I have also been catching up with family.
Thank you once again, and I hope both yourself and your family stay safe and well in these times.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Kindest Regards.


Hi Jan-Maree and Joy,
I just wanted to write and say a huge thank you to you and to Joy. I got the quilt last week and absolutely love it!
The quilt has pride of place on my bed!
Thanks so much again,  and hope everyone is safe.
Kind Regards.

To whom it may concern,
I just wanted to personally thank the team involved with the amazing and kind work that you do. I recently received an Aussie Hero Quilts (Laundry Bag) and I love it! The bag has travelled overseas with me already and numerous states in Australia.
Kind Regards.

Dear Kaye,
Thank you so much for my fantastic quilt. I cannot express how appreciative I am for the time and effort that you have put into creating it for me. Receiving it has been one of the highlights of my deployment over here and I cannot thank you enough.
All the best

Recently, you made a wonderful quilt for my old Army Rugby team mate. I know he was completely in awe of it – and his wife is also overwhelmed by the support she is getting from everyone. 
So I wanted to say thank you for the wonderful work you did. 
Thank you again for all the wonderful work you and your wonderful team of volunteers do – absolutely amazing work.

Good Morning Gail,
I’d like to express my sincere thank you for the hero quilt Sheena, Jenny D and yourself made me. 
Due to COVID the mail over here is delayed up to 2-4 months so my partner organised for it to get sent to our home. It arrived recently, and it’s perfect. The colours you all used are fantastic and overall I love it! I couldn’t have asked for more.
I have a few more months to go on my deployment. I am currently in Africa, and can’t wait to get back and see the quilt in person.
Thank you so much again to you and your team for the quilt and also letter letting me know a bit about yourself. You bring joy to so many people from what you do with the quilts.
Many thanks and gratitude.

Good Afternoon Lyn,
I’d like to introduce myself. I am currently deployed with the Royal Australian Air Force in the Middle East conducting space operations in support of our mission. I work with our United States and Canadian partners. This is my second deployment.
I am a Queensland boy originally, and currently live and work in ACT. 
I cannot explain how much your kindness and skill means to not just myself but my family as well. This will be a family treasure.
On a selfish note, your laundry bag is a life saver. It will help me carry my clothes from our block laundry to my room without dropping any on the floor.
I have sent photos of your work to my wife, parents and in-laws and everyone is taken away by the beauty and skill in the work that you made.
Again, words cannot express my gratitude to you for your beautiful work but I will be forever grateful.

Hi Lisa,
I just wanted to let you know that I received a beautiful ANZAC Tribute quilt from Sue P.
I will write directly to Sue to thank her personally. Thank you to you and the network of wonderful volunteers. It means the world to us to know that others are thinking of us and have taken the time to craft such special gifts. These quilts, your quilters will be treasured for a lifetime.

Dear Tamsin and Peter,
I am writing to you to show my sincere appreciation for the laundry bag which you have crafted for me. It was such a pleasant surprise to receive the bag and the kind letter accompanying it. Your thoughtful words within the letter mean a great deal to myself and the many other deployed personnel.
 As a lateral transfer from the British Army 2 years ago with 24 years’ service, I have never received anything so heartfelt and it makes our time away from loved ones that little bit easier knowing people like yourself are thinking about us.
I have immediately started using my laundry bag and as a result, the bag is the subject of much conversation between my family and me. It is the most “Australian” thing I’ve seen, with many phrases sewn into the bag that we, as a family are slowly becoming conversant with!
My wife finished her nursing degree prior to our move to Australia and works in a medical centre in Queensland. I have 2 beautiful daughters who are doing fantastically well in school. My eldest was recently selected to become school captain for year 12, whilst my youngest became school ambassador for year 9, also during my absence.
To receive this display of appreciation from members of the public as you have shown to me will live with me forever.
Many thanks to you and your family, and wishing you a safe Christmas break.
Yours Sincerely.

From the Facebook page 
‘I am so incredibly grateful to whichever talented person – (Lynn F) made this for my daughter. She is a dog handler in the RAAF, currently deployed overseas, and has received this today. Thank you just doesn’t seem like enough to say… but it is all I have got.


Dear Lyn,

Thank you so very much for the beautiful quilt you made me! I am sorry it took so long to write- with the Corona Virus I ended up extending my time in the Middle East an extra month, we had to make a lot of changes to keep our people safe between all the travel zones. 
I made it back to the ACT where I love now, mid-winter, it was a big temperature change. So, when your quilt arrived in the mail, I was so happy- here was a lovely, cosy, soft thing that tied my 2 worlds together. In a house still full of boxes plus being unpacked it was extra nice to have something with such lovely colours to look at when I came home. Thank you.
I hope spring has been good to you and you’ve been getting plenty of rain this season. And I hope you have been able to get out and enjoy the outdoors. 
It has been a surreal year this year, around the world and here in Australia.
I’m hoping the borders open up in time for Christmas to see family, or hopefully over summer at least. My Mum has been hoping I can come to visit for a while over this summer. 
Thank you again for my beautiful quilt; I am touched that you went to so much effort and labour for a stranger. Know that I look forward to using it for years to come and it is very special to me as a reminder of the desert and the Middle East.
With kind Regards,
Dear Bridget
I just like to say thank you for the time and effort you put into sewing my quilt and laundry bag. Receiving them was like getting a Christmas present! It also arrived at the perfect time as winter was fast approaching and I was in isolation at the time with not much in terms of cold weather clothing or bedding. I love both of them. You did a fantastic job! I can also tell you that the rest of the lads also loved theirs too!
Our deployment was a very dull due to the current pandemic, however, the little things such as receiving our quilts and laundry bags certainly raised moral.
As my deployment has now finished, I’m glad to be back home in Aus, however I’m not free yet as we have 14 days of isolation before we are freed. By the end of my 14 days here, I would have spent a total of 60 days in isolation throughout my deployment. I can’t wait to leave and start my Christmas holidays and see friends and family. I haven’t told my mother I’m home yet as I’m going to surprise her when I get out.
Thank you again Bridget for your time and effort, and to for the thoughtful time and effort of Aussie Hero Quilts. Everyone in our rotation loved their present!
Merry Christmas

 Hi Catherine, 

I received my quilt and wash bag. They are absolutely beautiful. Very proud to have my ‘Nanna Naps’ under it. 

Thank you again from the bottom of my heart. You have no idea on how special the quilt is. And very happy bright colours. 

Wishing you and the team a very Merry Christmas and let’s hope a better New Year. 

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