Grati-Tuesday 26 September

Written by AHQ

26 September 2017

Hi all

Some really great messages here.  



Good Afternoon Raeleen,

Firstly, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your gift of a fantastic quilt, it absolutely did brighten my day, and I will cherish it. You and the team at Aussie Hero Quilts really do a wonderful job of showing us men and women who serve that people care about what we are doing here and the time we sacrifice is appreciated. I love the design and it exactly what I wished for, great work! Thank you also for your interesting background story, I will think about you and your efforts every time I see the quilt. 

Your work with Aussie Hero Quilts is exceptional and in addition to my quilt I received a great laundry bag to which I am so grateful. The quilts and bags that you and others craft for us, and the effort that is clear in the quality of them shows the good in everyday Australians, and a sense of a wider Aussie community spirit that we all really appreciate. We proudly carry these laundry bags around and have the quilts on our beds to remind ourselves and others that are passing by WHY we do this. We do it for the people of Australia. Thanks for the motivation top up.

Thank you kindly, keep up the good work, we appreciate it more than you will know.

Kind Regards, 


Dear Ruth,

I am writing to express my thanks for your wonderful gift of a laundry bag.
I particularly liked the theme and the fact my initials are emblazoned on the front!

By way of introduction,  I am an Army officer currently serving in Afghanistan.
I have actually had a quite a few tours here, however this is the first time I have ever received a gift like this and I would like to say it was a very welcome surprise.  I still have several months left to go before I can return home to my wife, so I am very sure it will come in handy!

Thank you again and please keep up the great work – all the Aussies over here and abroad very much appreciate your thoughts and efforts.

Yours sincerely,

Dear Bridget,

I am a Petty Officer Electronics Technician still serving onboard HMAS Arunta. Earlier this year I received a fantastic set of gifts from you and firstly wanted to apologise for the slow reply to thank you.

With rotation 64 of operation Slipper now at a close we spent 252 days on deployment of which I spent roughly 180 of those at sea in support of coalition forces anti terrorism operations. This rotation was highly successful with us seizing 800kg of hashish and 510kg of herion. The estimated value of these drugs was $186 million and is now not available on the streets as well as unable to be used towards the funding of terrorism activities.

During the deployment we visited many countries such as; UAE, Muscat, Tanzania, The Seychelles, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bahrain. We generally visited each country from three to four days at a time. I was also able to travel to Germany and Austria with my mother and brother for a two week leave period around the middle of the deployment. I had the opportunity to participate in a safari tour in Tanzania, visit the worlds largest building the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and gained my open water diving certification whilst in the Seychelles. 

Even with all of things we did, one of the biggest highlights during the deployment was receiving the quilts and laundry bags that so many such as yourself dedicated your time towards making. Everyone was always excited when the mail arrived in hopes of receiving their custom made items and also to see everyone’s fantastic designs. The creativity that went into designing these finished products was and is still truly amazing.

Leaving our loved ones behind in Australia was difficult, but made easier with your help of sending a little bit of Australia and reminding us of those thinking of us back home. I wish you and your family all the best in future endeavours and I will forever treasure the gifts I have received.

I have attached a photo of the quilt and laundry bag, united together after a very very long journey.


Dear Quilting Ladies,

I have had a message from my grandson in Iraq that he has received the quilt and laundry bag that you so generously made for him.
He is very humbled by your kindness and has asked me to pass on his many thanks.
When he returns home, hopefully in time for Christmas, I will endeavour to take a photo of him and the quilt and get it to you.
We are so proud of him.


Hi Pennie,

I have received your care package including a laundry bag and minties. I am very humbled to receive a gift with as much dedication and care as your hand sewn laundry bag. Especially when your day job as an Emergency Nurse is as confronting as it gets. I would love to see people in your line of work one day receive the appropriate accolades and recognition usually reserved for the Defence Force. I feel it takes a very unique person to work as a nurse and I personally would like to thank you and your colleagues for all that they do for the community. The resources Australia allocates to your line of work is inadequate which makes all that you do that much more remarkable.

But yes as you said it contributes to funding your Fabric habit. In fact this deployment will contribute to my aspirations of one day owning a small home somewhere quiet and spending my time with two dogs!!!

The food you provided was very popular with my American and British friends. I would like you to know that some of the contents of your care package contributed to a much larger care package going to Coalition troops in a far more confronting area of the country than the part I am in. They will be very appreciative of this I’m sure… Some of them may have gone their whole lives without seeing proper coffee haha! 

The Iraqis I interact with are very weary of conflict. They have a resounding resilience though,  which is derived from a very strong family unit. It is not uncommon to have three generations living under the one roof! They live to serve their parents and grandparents. Something lost in western society. It’s important for me to learn from that and appreciate that they are just like you and me. They appreciate our commitment here. I have been very relieved to hear that some of the older generation have seen a marked improvement in safety and security over the years. This reinforces that our commitment to this country is just, and this commitment includes the contribution from the home, from people such as yourself.

I hope this finds you well.

Kindest regards,


Sorry it has taken me a while to find the time to get an email to you, but it has been a rather busy couple of weeks.  I took my laundry bag home to show the kids and the whole family thought it was just perfect and loved it.  So once again, thank you very much for the bag.

And thanks also for taking the time to put the note in the bag, even though I met you on the day, now I know even more about you!

So…better let you know about me…
Thanks again for the laundry bag and all the quilts and bags you have made for ADF personnel.

Keep in touch 


Good afternoon Mrs Niven,

I have woken up to the arrival of your parcel and the stunning laundry bag that you have made me. I cannot thank you enough for designing such a beautiful bag. I will be sure to have a photo taken with it upfront of our aircraft and send it to you.

The bag of goodies made my day! To start with a lollipop is generally unconventional for myself, but I made an exception….and then went to the gym Hahaha.

Your lovely card has given me something else to add to my wall. I too have a cat that is spoilt beyond measure and I miss him dearly. Of course I am also looking forward to going home and seeing my friends and family, but animals have a special gift which is why I love the card so much. 

Thank you again for the stunning laundry bag. I am afraid to use it for laundry as it is too good for that! I may have to re-purpose it for something even better.

The puzzle book could not have come at a better time. I was just looking for something like this the other day. Not an easy task here I assure you. I will put it to good use.

Warmest regards,

Dear Ruth,

Thank you so much for the laundry bag which I received this week whilst our ship made a stop in XXXXXX. I am absolutely thrilled with it. You have done an amazing job and I’ll be sure to get much use from it for years to come. Thank you.

I grew up in Sydney and joined the Navy at 19 years old 15 years ago. I lived in Adelaide for two years in 2014/15 while working with the Air Force. It was a treat to receive a laundry bag from a place which I am very fond of. O’Sullivan Beach is lovely part of the state. I was living on the beach at Grange while I was there.

Thanks again and I’ll be cheering on the Crows next weekend from the middle of somewhere. 

Dear Su
I have just received the laundry bag you made for me through Aussie Hero Quilts! Thank you very much! The colours and motifs are great. It will certainly brighten up the tent. 
I really appreciate the effort you have made to personalise it with my initials and the squadron colours. I’m sure it will be well used for many deployments to come.
Your kind and encouraging words are also much appreciated.
Once again, thank you for your efforts. I sincerely appreciate the gesture. 


Hi Bridget, 

                    Just a quick note to say thank you for the quilt, it exceeded my expectations by far. A few people received their quilts in this port and I can honestly say that I have not seen one that I like more than mine.

The trip is going OK and we are past the halfway mark. The heat up here is pretty extreme.

The work you ladies put into making the quilts and laundry bags is certainly appreciated.

Once again thank you so much for the quilt.


Dear Cheryl,

Thank you very much for the quilt, it has come in very handy and added some colour to my otherwise boring room.  When I get home I will be giving the rug to my 1 year old son so he can use it to think of me when I am deployed again in the future.

Thank you

Hello Liz,
I would like to thank you for the fantastic laundry bag that you have sewn for me. It is just amazing!   The colours, the Aussie Flag, and initials on it are just perfect.

It is so handy over here as we need to carry our laundry through the dust and heat to the laundry facilities, but the quality and uniqueness of the bag is just amazing.
Thanks for you your service to all the people over here. I know that the entire team really appreciates it.

All the best.


Hi Raeleen and Liz

I’d like to thank both of you for my Aussie Hero Quilt & laundry bag.  The designs are fantastic and exactly what I was hoping for, you both did a great job.  I’ve attached a photo of myself and my Weapon Systems Officer with the quilt just prior to going on a mission. 

returned home a few weeks ago, and although I enjoyed my deployment and the awesome experience it was, it’s great to be home.  I do hope to return for another deployment in the near future.  The weather in the Middle East is hotter than I’ve ever experienced in Australia.  Every day it is anywhere from 45 – 50 degrees!  I’m glad I missed the winter cold back home, but I certainly won’t be complaining about our summer heat this year.  It’s always very hazy/dusty there and I didn’t once see any rain.  There’s also no grass there so I was definitely looking forward to heading home and seeing some nice greenery and mowing my lawn.  It’s the little things.       

Once again, thank you for the time and effort you put into making quilts and laundry bags for complete strangers.  Rest assured your work is truly appreciated by everyone who is deployed.

All the best for the future.
Dear Ruth, 

Thank you so much for my laundry bag. I love it!  As you might have guessed when making it,  pink is my favourite colour. 

It was everything I could want and will always remind me of my time here. 
I will be taking my two weeks off to see my family in 5 days time and I am really excited to be seeing them.  I will meet up with my husband and two daughters, who are 14 and 11. They have both been exceptionally mature and helping out their Dad at home. 
Anyway, thank you once again for my laundry bag, I really appreciate what you and all the other quilters do for us on deployment. 


Hi Sally,

I received your package today with my awesome new laundry bag, the snakes and shapes got devoured pretty quickly and I managed to make it back from our HQ with almost half the mint slices.  I tried to convince the other guys they needed to go in the fridge for a bit but they weren’t buying it.

As you suspected I am deployed somewhere “warm”, 50^c in body armour warm, we are training the local Iraqi Security Forces to aid in their fight against Da’esh (ISIS).  They are really passionate about protecting and helping the Iraqi people so we feel like we are achieving something worthwhile.

Pretty soon I get to go home for a couple of weeks to see my family, we are all really excited as I have been away for months.

Receiving your parcel was a great morale boost and we all really appreciate the time and effort you and your fellow quilters go to, the bag is beautifully made and I’ll proudly keep it for many years. I think some of the Personnel from other countries might be a bit envious when they see us Aussies dropping off our colourful personalised laundry bags.

Thanks again so much for the Bag and goodies, I hope you won the Hockey final and all the best for the future.
Kind regards,

Hi Ruth,
I just received the most amazing laundry bag I could have imagined. I hope you don’t mind but when I get home it is going to go up on my wall. Currently my mancave has been bombarded with St Kilda memorabilia, my wife’s favourite team. I need to settle the score haha.
Anyway, I am extremely grateful, and I’m writing this letter as a small token of my appreciation.

Dear Bridget,
I am writing to thank you for the lovely quilt that you made for me with the theme of scuba diving. I am now at home and due to a mix up in ordering the quilt I was never able to use it whilst deployed, but had to send it straight home without opening it about two weeks ago. I am now home and the quilt has pride of place on the sofa for cold snap emergencies. Thank you so much for the quilt, bag and most importantly also for your support.
I was deployed to the Combined Joint Task Force –Operation Inherent Resolve.  I am a Reserve Officer, so I left my small business in the hands of my 21 year old daughter to go, and I am now adjusting back into that role. 
At the end of this year I plan to go to Phuket for a long holiday and re-certify as a scuba diving instructor. Be assured I will be taking the quilt and laundry bag with me when I go.
Thanks again and all the best to you and all the “Quilters” as it is great to have such support.

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

Jan-Maree  xx

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