Grati-Tuesday 19 December

Written by AHQ

19 December 2017

Dear Cath,
Thanks you so much for my laundry bag and was a very welcome surprise to receive this week. I have only just returned to the Middle East Region and is why you have not heard anything from me. 
I only posted in to the squadron in January this year and have hit the ground running ( at times sprinting ) with deploying on operational duties and conducting both domestic  and overseas exercises.  
I’m hoping I will have time to sit down and reply to your letter soon but I did want to quickly let you know I have received your beautiful work and can not thank you enough for all your work and support to this causes.
I have a young family I have left behind for the first Christmas since I join the RAAF so your laundry bag  has brightened up my day. Hope all went well and you are now proud grandmother, as all grandmothers are and all your family spoils you for Christmas. 
Again thank you for your support and have attached a photo of me and your work.

Your sincerely 


Liz – 

In 2016 I was the Chaplain on HMAS Darwin. We did a gulf trip and AHQ kindly donated laundry bags and quilts to the members of the deployment. 

I very much personally enjoyed receiving a laundry bag and quilt. As Chaplain I was involved in the whole organisation with AHQ so I got to know Jan- Maree and the team well. I was very grateful personally but even more thankful for the blessing these gifts were to everyone who put their name forward. 
This year I posted onto HMAS Adelaide and have had another busy year at sea. I have kept a close link with the Darwin as often they were in company with us this year in a task group. 
On one of my many visits to the ship I was chatting with CO,  CMDR Phil Henry when he said he had a gift for me. To thank me for my ongoing involvement in the life of the ship he gave me a wonderful and beautifully made laundry bag commemorating the decommissioning of the ship. 
It was a bag that you made and I am again humbled, thankful and very moved by your generosity, thoughtfulness and skill. 
It is an incredible memento for me for my time on a very wonderful ship. AHQ is such a great service because in a tangable, creative and artisitc way you have taken the time to say thanks to us who serve in the RAN. All I can say in return is thank you so much – it means a great deal. 
So again thanks so much for the laundry bag commemorating the decommissioning of Darwin. 
Can I also take the opportunity to wish you and yours a very holy Christmas and blessed new year. 


Dear Robyn,
Thankyou so much for the laundry bag I received. It’s beautiful & the time & effort you have put into it is greatly appreciated. I am married with 3 children, two of which are also in the Army as is my husband. My husband & I live in Hobart with our youngest child who is 14. We just moved there last XMAS from Townsville. This is my third deployment, however my first away from loved ones at XMAS time.
Our routine is pretty much the same each day. Although we do get one day off a week which I look forward to. Thankyou once again for the laundry bag & Merry XMAS to you & your family.

Hi Janis,

I wanted to write you a quick email to say thank you for the laundry bag that you made for me. Your design was great, and spot on for what I was hoping for.

Thank you also for your support. It truly is a comfort to know that Australians like yourself care about what we do. We certainly appreciate the kind thoughts and your efforts with Aussie Hero Quilts and Laundry Bags.

I hope you have a Merry Christmas and wish you all the best for 2018.
Thanks again,

Hi Nicole,

I know this email is coming very late but I’ve been meaning to send it off for a while now and I hope it doesn’t take away from how grateful I really am. I wanted to say thank you so much for the quilt that you put together for me, it is far beyond any expectations I had being my first one and it really gave me an emotional boost during the deployment.  You put everything I love about the New Orleans Saints perfectly into the quilt and I am going to hold onto it for a very long time. 

I loved reading about your family and American connections, it’s nice to hear that kind of thing when you are away from home. 

I loved all the snacks you threw in there (probably ate them to quick to be honest). I am from Melbourne originally and grew up there until I joined the Navy in 2015 and have been moving around ever since. 

My family still lives down in my hometown and I try to get down there as often as possible but it can be hard. Anyways I will stop taking up your time, I just really wanted to let you know how much I loved my quilt and the effort you put into it for me, I couldn’t be happier with it.
Thank You 

To Sandy,

Sorry for the late reply, but as you appreciate, I’ve been quite busy. I wanted to thank you for the Quilt and washing bag I was made by you and your team.

I have been in the Military for 13 years now and deployed multiple times to East Timor,  Afghanistan and Iraq, but this is the first time I’ve received something from Aussie Hero Quilts, and am extremely grateful. It may seem like a small gesture, but it means a lot to myself and I know a lot of the boys think the same. Especially when so much time and effort goes into customising each one. Truly amazing. 

  Thank you for everything you and your team do, its greatly appreciated.

  I hope you have a great Christmas and New Year.

 Thank you

An old friend of Aussie Heroes has deployed again and for a bit of fun he asked me to arrange a Postman Pat laundry bag for his colleague who is deploying as the postie for his particular group…. 
The bag arrived this week….. 

Dearest Janis, 

I recently received your laundry bag and you are right I was suitably roasted by my fellow inmates…at first I did not understand, as I have never seen the cartoon Postman Pat before..but it was soon explained to me. 

I suspect right now as you are reading this you can look outside to a nice green block and in the nice warmth…for that I envy you, as we are in the start of winter here and everything is concrete and brown, with a scattering of trees but a lack of colour. The rain if it comes will bring the mud I am told. 

Even though this is not my first deployment, you forget and sometimes take for granted the colour of Australia, its something besides my wife I will miss in the next few months until leave. 

Thank you for you generous gift and I hope you Peter and the family have a safe and merry Christmas and happy holidays (though being retired, you are always on holiday, oh how I envy you right now). 

All the best 


Good afternoon Raeleen,

My apologies for my (very) late response but I would just like to express my thanks for my quilt and laundry bag you made for me earlier this year. It means a lot to us serving overseas that people back home are thinking of us, let alone dedicating a large amount of their time to making personalised quilts and laundry bags, not to forget the morale boosting Tim Tams too! I will cherish the blanket and laundry bag, I really enjoy the design and it will bring back great memories of my deployment. It was a great day receiving my package and opening it to find the quilt and laundry bag, I’m sure I won’t forget it.

Serving Australia overseas was a great privilege and a career highlight. Thank you very much for your support, it makes a big difference to all of us deployed.

Kind Regards

Hi Wendy,

Let me begin by thanking you so much for the work that you and your peers at AHQ do to support deployed service personnel.

I am 35 years old and been in the Army for nearly 15 years, most of that time as an Army Reservist although this is my second stint of full time service.  My first deployment was a Peacekeeping mission to the Solomon Islands in 2007 and here I am ten years later in the Middle East.  It may sound strange, but I am very privileged for the opportunity to conduct my job in a far off foreign land, and it humbles me to think about the ‘kindness of strangers’ like yourself to provide us a little morale boost through the sending of packages.  The hours can be long and challenging, but it is equally rewarding to contribute my small part.

I love my laundry bag and it will most certainly be put to good use, I currently have a very uninspiring drab beige one….and you would believe it… actually developed a massive rip down the side just the other day!  The timing could not have been more perfect and your quality quilting work is far superior and attractive to the ‘Made in China’ boring thing I previously used! I am sure you will do well with your career change into the professional quilting world.

As it is getting late I will sign off, but I wanted to ensure that I wrote to you straight away to convey my appreciation and give you a little insight into the recipient of your hard work.  I will be sure to share the other parcel items with my mates.  It truly is appreciated. Keep up the great work!

All the best,

Dear Janis

Today I received your amazing handmade quilt and laundry bag. I first need to say thank you for such an beautiful quilt and wash bag, it really put a smile on my face when I saw those. The design is everything I could imagine and so much more! You have a marvelous skill and I really appreciate all your hard work and commitment that no doubt went into making them! The poppy sash looks incredible and is a wonderful idea that you came up which also coincides with what I’m doing here on my Middle Eastern deployment. 

Receiving your quilt work has been an absolute highlight of my deployment and will be something that I appreciate and cherish for the rest of my life. I have to thank you once again for your amazing work! I wish you the best of the end of 2017 and hope that the silly season is one filled with laughter and happiness. I hope to hear that other deployed sailors or diggers are lucky as me to receive your quilt work for their upcoming tours of duty.

Much appreciation and many thanks. 

Hi Bridget,

Thank you for your letter and more importantly thank you for the beautiful quilt and laundry bag, my daughter and I loved them and were very impressed at their quality. 

By way of introduction, I am a Captain in the Australian Regular Army and I am allocated to the Royal Australian Signals Corps. I have previously been deployed to Iraq in 2015 and was most recently deployed to Al Minhad Airbase in the United Arab Emirates. I have served for 7 years and am engaged with two children; my daughter is 4 years old and my son is 10 months (who was born 2 weeks before my last deployment). 

Again thank you for the quilt and laundry bag, the quilt has taken pride of place on my daughter’s bed and the laundry bag is in use by my son at present.

Wishing you and your family a very merry Christmas and a wonderful new year.

Kind regards,


At the start of HMAS Darwin’s last deployment all of the sailors aboard received a laundry bag from Aussie Heros. I personally received your handy work. The laundry bag has proven to be invaluable and has been used constantly during the 3 month deployment. 

I can confirm these sorts of items are appreciated by sailors, for both their usefulness and personality, especially by me. I will probably never say that doing my laundry is a treat, but your laundry bag certainly made me smile when I was able to find it quickly among 60 others. You see, the laundry bags issued to us are all the same, which makes it difficult to identify ones own laundry, in amongst so many others. The uniqueness of your laundry bag – made this process much simpler. 
I thank you very much for your participation with Aussie Heros and I offer my personal thanks for what is a fabulous laundry bag. 


That is all for now. 

Till next time.. keep speading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx

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