Grati-Tuesday – 3rd October 2023

Written by AHQ

3 October 2023


Happy Tuesday Friends!

Welcome to the first week of October.  Only 16 sleeps now to the Thank You Weekend in Canberra.

Grab a cuppa, sit back and enjoy some well deserved gratitude!


Dear Toni F,


Thank you so very much for my beautiful laundry bag. I love the ode, the jets, and the poppies. To be honest, I feel quite humbled and undeserving of such a gift as I am only a reservist.


While I’m passionate about creative design, I have little formal education or experience that field. However, I did work in aged care, and in particular dementia. I found the work to be very rewarding and despite common perception, joyful. I want to thank you for the work you invested in that field, older people are a blessing and all too often forgotten.


I live in a Northern suburb of Perth and it’s a nice old house with a big backyard for my wolfhound x kelpie ‘Bear’. My 5 children are all too old to care about a backyard anymore, they love getting out with friends.


My current civilian work is Staff chaplaincy in government hospitals. I facilitate peer groups for intern doctors and it is amazing to see the moral quality of the up and coming medical graduates. They have deep compassion and concern for patient care, even in increasingly demanding work environments. I have just received a job offer to move into Police Chaplaincy, and I look forward to the challenge of working alongside first responders.


Thanks again for the laundry bag, I’m not sure if I should use it for it’s intended purpose or hang it on the wall.


Blessings to you and your continued ministry and task of emptying your fabric stash and filling hearts.

Warm regards,


Dear Lois S,
It was such a surprise when my daughter gave me the Aussie Hero Quilt. I was quite emotional actually. It makes sense now why she was asking me questions about my service.  
My Navy service was one of the highlights of my life. I was very proud to serve. I have so many memories and this quilt will always be a reminder of my service. The more I look at it the more I can see all the little details that were included, like the anchors embroidered on the back.
I am still involved with Veterans in my volunteer role as a Welfare Officer with the TPI association.
My wife and myself are currently building a new home in Townsville. Our last home! This quilt will be perfect for the single bed in the guest room for when the grandchildren come to stay. Grandad will have an excuse to tell them his Navy stories!
After a tough couple of years for myself, it meant so much to receive this quilt. I am very humbled to have received one.
This is a great initiative that you and the volunteers give up your time to take part in.
This is a keepsake that I will always treasure.
Many thanks again.

Hi Ann S,


I cannot thank you enough for your kindness in sharing your talent in crafting what is a magnificent quilt for my brother. I will get it off in the post to him on its way to the USA over the weekend but I already know he is going to love it.


It is so wonderfully kind of you and all the volunteers for the work they do in recognising our Defence members at some of the wildest and loneliest times in their career (and equally, some of the happiest).


My brother is currently posted with his wife and their 2 young children in the US until 2025 and I know they are missing home, after 9 months away. I don’t think that they expected that really. Over the last 15 years he has deployed multiple times for long periods of time, so they thought this would be easiest one with the family in tow.  As much as they are enjoying exploring a whole country and everything America has to offer, I guess it is true, there is no place like home. And we can’t wait to have them home when the posting is up. He turns 40 in December and this beautiful quilt will be a piece of home while we can’t be with him and undoubtedly a treasured gift from you and the AHQ team for many years to come.


Hope to get to meet you at an event or when passing through your home town sometime down the line. It’s such a beautiful place and I have always put it on the list of places to visit each year for cherries but sadly have missed it most years as the seasons get busier as Christmas creeps in. Maybe this year will be the year! 

Thank you again,

I will let you know when it gets to him safely.


Good morning Jan-Maree B,


I recently stayed at Diggers Rest in Beerwah and was presented with an Aussie Hero Quilt. It is quite something and I am delighted to have received this wonderful gift.


I had not heard of Aussie Hero Quilts until now and very much commend you and your fine group for the support provided to serving troops and veterans. Very uplifting.


Could you please convey my heartfelt thanks to Kerry B and Alison C for their work and generosity in donating their time and expertise in making this lovely quilt, it is very much appreciated. Rest assured it will assume pride of place and will be well utilised.


Once again, thank you all and keep up the great work.




Hi Janine R,

I recently received your parcel containing the laundry bag and a few other goodies. I would just like to say a quick thank you for your efforts it is really appreciated and I think you have done an amazing job. 
I am a pilot in the Navy, flying the MH60R Seahawk helicopter and have been embarked on HMAS Brisbane this year. Your laundry bag has arrived just in time as I am shortly deploying again for the remainder of the year  When I am home, I live on the south coast of NSW, with my partner and our dog Loki. It is a beautiful area down here and would recommend a visit when you get the chance later on in your caravan. 
I really appreciate the bag and letter, it is a nice reminder of life back home especially when spending extended periods of time away.

Many thanks  


Dear Gail MacQ and Jan-Maree B,


I am posted to HMAS Brisbane and have been lucky enough to receive one of your laundry bags today. I was on leave for the birth of my first child when the list of names requesting a bag was taken so I am extra lucky to get one of the last bags. 


My wife and new born daughter are both doing well which makes being away for a deployment somewhat easier knowing they are both safe and healthy. Reading both of your letters knowing that our service to Australia doesn’t go unnoticed was another timely moral boost at the start of our deployment as our lives back home roll-on and we shift our thinking towards preparing for operations.


Jan-Maree, This is my second laundry bag, the first was when I deployed with HMAS Darwin in 2018 so it’s had a big workout. 


Thank you for the laundry bags and your unwavering support to all service personnel.


Kind regards,


Hi Clarissa L,

I just received the quilt and laundry bag.
I am so happy with it thank you so much for your kindness, it looks so good. 
(Quilt made by Garage Girls with embroidery by Keryn and LB by Wendy)


Good Evening Angela T,

Just wanted to shoot through an email to let you know that the laundry bag you made for me arrived safely today on the ship and I absolutely love it. 
I’m putting together a thank you package and a more extensive thank you note for you and your family to send off tomorrow prior to us deploying next week. 
I’ve been in the Australian Navy for almost 10 years this year and there are not many keep sakes I intend to keep when my time in the Navy comes to an end, but this personalised laundry bag will certainly be one of them. 
The service as volunteers that yourself and the rest of Aussie Hero Quilts provides honesty makes our day and is incredibly special to everyone onboard 
Best regards,


Good morning Barbara D,


Your quilt is beautiful, thank you so much for it. I really love everything about it! It’s currently on our lounge. I don’t know if you noticed however some of the fabric has a Hawaiian print on it with ‘aloha’. My husband and I adore Hawaii!


My husband’s family lives in Townsville, and he himself grew up there. We go up to visit every so often. I really like the weather up there, which I know sounds odd!


I am originally from Sydney and after marriage we lived there for five years before moving to Wagga in 2021. Whilst we were living in Wagga, I was accepted into the RAAF myself and commenced recruits in September the same year. We were then both posted to Canberra in 2022, where we will be until at least end of 2025. I’m not a huge fan of Canberra, the weather is absolutely horrible. I would much prefer being closer to the coast, and being warmer!


I hope you have a great weekend


Thank you again for my beautiful quilt.


Good afternoon Beverly U,


I just wanted to say thank you on behalf of me and my whole team for your very generous gift of the wash bags!


They were excellently sewn and crafted and we really appreciated them.


We are in the British Army, and we were deployed alongside the Australian Defence Force in Papua New Guinea, hence why these were gifted to us! Our Regiment is made up solely of soldiers from the country of Nepal (The Gurkhas), and is The Royal Gurkha Rifles. We really enjoyed working with the Australian Defence Force, and look forward to using these bags in the future! We are currently stationed in Brunei and will eventually return to the UK. 


Thank you once again, these really put a smile on all of our faces and will make us think very fondly of Australia and yourself whenever we deploy overseas and take these bags with us! 




Hi Anne H, 
You recently made me a laundry bag and just wanted to send you a quick email letting you know I’ve received it!
Thank you so much, I love it. Especially the camel that really made my day, so thank you for putting in the effort!
I grew up in Broome and haven’t been able to visit in over 4 years since joining the Navy, due COVID and my family moving to Perth. It just hasn’t lined up. I miss it a lot and hope to visit Easter next year, but for the meantime I’ll have my laundry bag to remind me of it!
Nice to hear you swim. I am a swimmer myself. Swam competitively when I was young training 6 plus times a week before I moved to Perth for Uni in 2017. Now days I put the effort in to swim every Sunday, though 3km is my limit and I am much slower these days. Interestingly though, my technique is still the exact same!
Thanks again for my laundry bag!

Hi Jan-Marie B,
A quick note to say how much I appreciated the ‘Aussie Hero Quilt’ which was brought over last weekend; it is magnificent, and I am so proud to say I now own one.
To say it was a surprise would be an understatement, particularly having that rascal Xxxxx pop up from the bushes (well nearly) and present the quilt to me in front of a garage full of friends. I was overwhelmed I’m not ashamed to say and not helped by both yours and Heather’s B letters! I will follow this note up with a personal thank you to Heather B.
The idea behind your charity is both incredibly poignant and practical. I saw a number of my CSU-10 team excited to receive their quilt or laundry bag when deployed during 2013-2014. It was also a significant morale booster; something a commander will always welcome.
It reminded me somewhat of my first deployment to the MEAO in 2002 as part of a four-person team sent to project manage the initial construction of the very same camp. We were required to ‘piggy-back’ off the Canadian’s and Operational Security meant little knowledge of our deployment was available to those outside the ‘compartment’. As such Christmas Day was a lonely time for four Aussies ingratiating themselves with our Canadian hosts, who by the way, were extremely generous. Still, with no letters from home, the Canadians gave each of us a care package from a Canadian citizen. The accompanying letter I received from an 8-year-old girl from Calgary was hilarious. A small gesture but sometimes they resonate most.
Congratulations Jan-Marie on the continuing success of Aussie Hero Quilts. You are a true hero and deserved of the evident profound respect of our folk in uniform past and present.
I am proud to have received my magnificent quilt and particularly under the circumstances of its delivery by that lovely clown.
Thank you Jan-Marie for your initiative in setting up the AHQ charity and I know there will be many more of our young men and ladies who will appreciate the gesture into the future.
Kindest Regards
Hi Aussie Hero Quilts
Would like say thank you for the laundry bag passed onto me via my CSM (Command Sergeant Major). I’m a CPL with the RAINF, all the team appreciate all your efforts and your support.



Dear Quilters


I would like to take the opportunity to thank all the volunteers of Aussie Hero Quilts and in particular my quilter, Belinda P, for the beautiful pieces of art I have received whilst deployed overseas.  The quilt and laundry bag have absolutely hit the mark for providing me with a memorable piece of art to remember my time here in Africa.


I have served in the military for 25 years.  I enlisted as an Army Transport driver in 1997 and have spent my career within the Royal Australian Corps of Transport, originally driving heavy vehicles and specialised military transports across all manner of terrain and contested environments.  I worked through the ranks before receiving a commission six years ago.


My career has seen me deployed operationally overseas three times, once to East Timor, Solomon Islands and Israel, as well as having conducted domestic security operations within Australia in support of the Olympic and Commonwealth games and further.  I was a member of staff for the headquarters coordinating engineering support to the NSW Bushfire Emergency Response.  I have also been fortunate to have conducted exercises and exchanges with Fiji, Papua New Guinea and the United Kingdom.  One of the most rewarding experiences of my career has been the opportunity to lead troops in large scale international field exercise and on operations, both domestically and globally.


I am currently deployed within the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS) where I will spend 12 months working as a United Nations Staff Officer.  I am halfway through my tour now.  My work involves the operational planning and execution of large-scale troop rotations in and out of the country. I am personally responsible for the rotation of approximately 4500 troops and their equipment per year spanning five different nations.  It is a challenging role but a fantastic opportunity to work with people from all parts of the world who despite national indifferences come together to make the mission work.


I am truly appreciative of the time and effort that goes into Aussie Hero Quilts and especially for the creativity of the artists who produce beautiful pieces of work.  You should be very proud of your efforts.



Quilt by Belinda P, Embroideries by Joan B



Until next week keep your letters, emails and photos coming in.  

Tuesday’s would be so totally boring without them!





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