Grati-Tuesday 26 November 19

Written by AHQ

26 November 2019

A rather special message to start today’s gratitude post off. How cute is this?

I have had my Aussie Quilt since my gulf trip on HMAS Melbourne. It is a special made quilt as it used one of the last pieces of fabric my mum gave me before she passed.

This quilt has gotten me through some tough times and some amazing adventures. It has been taken and displayed on every rack since I received it.

It’s now taking on one of the biggest changes in my Naval career.
Words can’t express my gratitude for the Aussie Quilt Heroes and all the hard work that goes on to support our troops.


Good Morning Lyn,

I hope this email finds you well.  Firstly I would like to apologise for not getting back to you earlier. I received your quilt about two weeks ago. I have been extremely busy and didn’t want to send a rushed email.

The quilt was amazing, I was blown away with it and I am so grateful for your efforts, all those who have received there quilts have been over the moon with what they have received, however I think mine was above and beyond. I am a very passionate Essendon supporter so I think it is such a wonderful gift. That being said, the time and effort that must go into making it really does blow me away. Again, I cannot thank you enough for the time and effort you must put into to making the quilts, the trick now will be keeping it from my Father (also a mad one eyed Bomber supporter).

A little about myself, I have been in the Navy for a little over 20 years. I have served predominately out of Darwin, which was great for me as I am a Darwin local. I have always served on patrol boats and dedicated my career to them.  I am currently the chief engineer on board which is a role I thoroughly enjoy and have now served for the last three years on Glenelg. I was lucky enough to commission Glenelg into service over ten years ago. We sailed down to Glenelg to conduct the ceremony which was a wonderful experience.

Anyway, once again I would like to thank you for the quilt and wish you and your family all the best and a safe Christmas.


Dear Robyn,
My apologies for the late reply of gratitude for the lovely quilt you sent me.  I thoroughly enjoyed receiving your package and reading your letter – it truly was a highlight of my deployment.  A very big thank you to Vicky and Keryn also for their contribution.  I am thoroughly touched by your thoughtfulness and generosity.
Whilst deployed, we created a band called ‘Al and the Minhads’, named after the base we were stationed.  Every 2 weeks, the welfare committee has a bar night available to those on camp.  In order to bring people out of their rooms and socialise in a ‘normal’ way, we would perform live music for them.    It was nerve wracking but exciting all at the same time.  As the saying goes, ‘build it and they will come’, and that they did.  After this first performance, we had musicians approaching us, also wanting to perform.  For the 24 people that made their way through our band, and the countless others that utilised the music room that we maintain on base, music is their comfort.  It is their happy place in an area of isolation, where work is everything and you are away from the comforts of home.  While I was away, I re-honed my skills on the acoustic guitar, learnt the bass guitar, drums and electric guitar.  I performed songs way outside of my comfort zone and it was an absolute delight to know that the music we were performing for others was making their time away from home that teensy bit more enjoyable.

G’day James,
I received the quilt that you made for me 4 days ago and have finally found some time to write you back. You did an amazing job, it came out exactly how I wanted it to be. I really appreciate the time and effort you put into the gift. I also apologise for having to make you run around to the bottle-o just so you could get the design perfect.  The sweets were a nice addition to the package as well, seeing the Tim Tams as I opened the package had me cheering.
Again, I would like to say thank you very much. I appreciate everything you have done and I hope you are going well.

Dear Bridget,
Thank You very much for the laundry bag, I love the design and it was beyond my expectations.
I am married with one 3 yr old daughter. My reunion with them at the airport was quite tearful as I missed my family dearly and especially my daughter as she would often ask her mum about me and want to see me. 
Thanks again for the bag and letter. I am sure it will get used much on future exercises and deployments. 
Take care

Dear Mrs Ball,
I am writing on behalf of the crew of HMAS Dechaineux to personally thank you for gifting the crew laundry bags prior to our North East Asia deployment. We greatly appreciate the time and effort that you and your fellow volunteers have invested in creating such vibrant pieces; they have been well received by the crew. Walking through the boat, you can see the bags strung up between switchboards, hanging from torpedo racks or from air reservoirs, or curiously tucked pretty much anywhere else there is space, which gives the boat a welcome colourful splash.

As submariners, our achievements often go unseen while we conduct our business; however, it is extremely heartening to receive these gestures of unconditional appreciation for our service. My crew have shown an increased sense of pride in their service knowing that there are Australians like yourself who take the time to show your appreciation for what we do. To each of the sewers that contributes to the wonderful organisation that is Aussie Hero Quilts, I send a warm and wholehearted thank you.

Yours sincerely,
Dear Anne,
Thank you for the wonderful quilt and laundry bag, I’m very happy with both of them. The colours you have chosen brighten up my room. I would like to compliment your workmanship on both the quilt and laundry bag, they will both stay with me for a long time. I especially like the fact that you have added a hanging pocket for a rod to hang.

I’m married with 1 daughter who is in year 12 and we currently live in Townsville. I come from a military background as my father served for some 25 odd years. This coupled with my service has seen me live in all states apart from NT and Tasmania. I was fortunate to also spend my high school years in Port Moresby when my father was posted there.

This is my third deployment overseas, first deployment was to Pakistan to assist when they had an earthquake back in 2005. My second was to Afghanistan in 2013 and now this one to the UAE. My time here is just about over and I will be heading home in early March. This should be my last deployment as I’m due to retire in 2 years after 35 odd years’ service.

Once again thank you for making me a quilt and laundry bag, it is much appreciated.
Dear Jan,
I’m just writing a quick note to thank you for organising the absolutely amazing quilt and laundry bag that I received.  I was only after a laundry bag as I didn’t want to cause all the trouble of a whole quilt for someone! Let me just say from the get-go that both items far exceeded anything that I was hoping for. They are both incredible! It turned out so much better than I anticipated – so much better than my dodgy concept drawing. 

 I think this is about my eighth or ninth deployment now. This is the second one since becoming a dad to my two little boys (aged 4 and nearly 2). I’m hoping that this will be the last one for a great many years as it’s been horrible being away from them. I did just get back home for 2 weeks of R&R which was fantastic and I guess I’m lucky in that I will be home in time for Christmas.

I intend to put the quilt on my son’s bed when I get back from here and the laundry bag will be a permanent fixture in my travel bag from now on as I travel about the country in the future.

I’m sure that you probably don’t get enough thanks for the job that you do and it must be nice to get something back in return once in a while.  I have sent similar letters and little tokens of my appreciation to Ruth and Sandy who did the work as well to say thanks and will attempt to email the pics to them once I have them.

Thank you ever so much. I really appreciate the effort that you went to.
Hello Sue B,
Thank you for your card, I loved reading it.
I am a clerk in the Army, so lots of admin and finance work.
I too have a pup who doesn’t understand walking in a straight line is what well behaved dogs do! His name is Spud and he is a Griffon.
I am glad you enjoyed making my laundry bag! I absolutely love it! So cute, and I love that you took my colour pink request seriously. The extra goodies were also very thoughtful.
I have given a few laundry bags out to the girls in my office – they say “Thanks, Sue.”
Anyway, a very big thank you. Your package really did brighten up my day!
Say hi to Nixon
Dear Sue,
Thank you so much for your thoughtful and homely presents. I love them so much, and cried a little. They really made my day, and it was such a great feeling when I saw the package as I had just arrived in the Middle East.

I have two little girls aged 7 and 4, their Dad has been very supportive of my career and service. He is doing a fabulous job back home looking after them and makes sure I can be assured to serve my country.

I love the pattern you chose for me, it is just beautiful and so colourful. Australian native flowers are my favourite and you just nailed it!

Thank you so much for sewing my initials on my bag, which made me feel super special. What you do for deployed defence members is priceless and amazing.

Thank you for your lovely letter, Tim Tams and handmade items, I really appreciate you spending the time in making these precious gifts for me! I will cherish all of them and I think of you all the time.

Sue, thanks again, and I wish all the best to you and your family.
Hello Pennie,
Thank you very much for the wonderful laundry bag, it looks great! It’s also the perfect size.
I appreciate that you’ve dedicated your time and money into this bag. I can tell that you’re very passionate about sewing, the quality really shows through.
I am an Avionics (electrical systems) Technician working on a modified Boeing 737 called a Wedgetail (It looks like it has a surf board on its back).
Sometimes it feels like I am working on a patient that is a big cry baby, it always has something to complain about.
I love Europe, I went to Switzerland last year and was absolutely blown away by the beauty of it, I felt as if I was living in a fairy tale.
I can only imagine how stressful being an Emergency Nurse must get. I get a great feeling knowing there are people out there looking after others in need, thank you.
Kind regards,

Dear Natalie,
Firstly and foremost, thank you so much for the laundry bag you took the time to make for me. Like a typical bloke I didn’t give much thought to my laundry needs and deployed without a laundry bag. But beyond the practicality of the laundry bag  it’s really nice to know people back home are thinking of us over here and wishing us well for our safety and success. The experience so far has completely changed the way I see the world and how lucky we are in Australia.
It sounds like you enjoy being creative and I can relate. I make knives from raw materials. I too enjoy giving them away and take pleasure seeing someone’s face light up when they receive it as a gift. With any luck I will still be making knives when I’m an old man.
Thank you again for taking the time to help out and say thank you to someone you have never met before. The world is a better place having you in it and you have made a difference in mine. Thank you and keep well

What a lovely bunch of messages. 

Till next time… keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx

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