Grati-Tuesday 5 September 2017

Written by AHQ

5 September 2017

Hi all, 
Lots of great messages tonight.  
HMAS Darwin’s captain handed out the rest of the special commemorative laundry bags today and lots of happy pictures where posted on Facebook. I will gather them into a post next week for those that cannot see Facebook.

For now you can enjoy these messages….

Dear Jenny R 
I refer to your letter and package we received on the 07 June 2017 in which you most kindly wrote to us and sent us your beautiful laundry bags. I can say that your package made its way to Plant troop, 17 Construction Squadron, 6 Engineer Support Regiment.  I can only speak on behalf of my troop, but we were delighted with the Laundry bags we received. They most definitely increased morale amongst the troop and all its members. Our Troop deployed on Cyclone Debbie relief earlier this year with our Regiment and we were excited to go and help other Australians in their time of need. Laundry Bags are an essential item while away with work, as communal laundries are an easy place for your uniform to be mixed up with others or lost, so having a terrific laundry bag that stands out will help greatly with this problem.
Jenny it is amazing to receive letters and gifts from members of the public like yourself for only doing our job. We wish that we could meet and thankyou in person for your wonderful laundry bags. I am happy to hear that you have not suffered the horrible effects of these storms that cause so much damage and destruction. We are back home and preparing for our next big exercise that will see us away for up to three months, so these laundry bags will definitely be packed in our kit.
Keep up the fantastic work and know that your efforts are truly appreciated, especially from Plant Troop, 17 Construction Squadron. I have attached a photo of some of the boys with their new laundry bags.
 Yours sincerely


Dear Anne

Thank you for the lovey laundry bag that I received in the mail yesterday.  It was a big surprise and certainly made my day.  I can see that you have put a great deal of effort into it and I appreciate the personal touch.  I will put it to good use in the remaining months of my tour.

I am indeed in XXXXX and am working within the US led headquarters as a legal advisor.  It is an interesting job and the time is passing quickly.  

We are probably at the other end of the weather scale compared to Hobart however we will soon be over the worst of the high temperatures. Thankfully the legal office where I work is comfortably air-conditioned.

I am very grateful for your efforts to support deployed service personnel.  We are all volunteers however it is nice to know that there are people thinking of us a home. 

Thank you and best wishes

Hi Ruth,
I recently received a laundry bag you made for me whilst on deployment on HMAS Newcastle in the Middle East Region.
I’d just like to say a huge thank you for taking the time to whip together such a great bag for me. It looks incredible, I couldn’t have asked for anything better. It’s almost a shame to use it!
Just checking out the sites in Dubai for a few days before we head back out to sea.
Hope you are well, and again, thank you very much. 


Hello Helen,

I was lucky enough to receive your laundry bag recently. I’m not sure if you knew where they were being sent to, but your’s made out to Malaysia on RCB (rifle company Butterworth) 118. RCB is a three month long trip to South East Asia based in Butterworth Malaysia. RCB’s run back to back all year round and can be comprised of any unit or combination of units. My unit being 8/12th medium artillery regiment based in Darwin.

All units that are sent over here become an infantry company regardless of their normal job role. The aim is to train the Australian army in infantry minor tactics. My rotation focused on jungle and urban warfare.

I enjoyed reading your letter, I am also going on my first cruise this summer to celebrate my grandmothers 80th.

Thanks to you and all other Aussie hero volunteers. We really appreciate your work, it does a lot for morale.

Kind regards

Hello Shirley,

I just wanted to take the time to send you an email to show my appreciation for the care package you have sent me, it was an extremely nice surprise to receive.

I will have to admit that I’m not the greatest golfer going around, in fact I’m better at the slice than landing the ball on the fairway. There was another guy who I work with who is a handy golfer and he wanted me to pass on his thanks for the golf magazine.

I’m normally posted to the main aviation base located in Nowra NSW but I’m currently deployed as part of the Aviation element. I have left my wife and two boys down in Nowra while I’m away. My boys are three and a half and one and a half so I have been missing out on some precious milestones while I’m away but that is the nature of the job. My wife is in her last year of her Masters in Education to be a high school teacher which has been challenging while I’m away, some days I think she has the more difficult job of maintaining a normal household while I’m away.

My Grandpa was also in WWII and was part of the Soldier Settlement Scheme on Kangaroo Island in South Australia. He completed tours of Africa and New Guinea as well.

Could you also pass on my thanks to Ron for the kind donation of the Carlton Memorabilia and who knows perhaps one day I may even sit near him at a game. Hopefully we’ll watch Carlton have a little more successful season than this year.

Thank you again for such a kind gift and it will be something that will follow me from ship to ship.


Dearest Sue,

Words cannot thank you enough for the beautiful quilt you’ve made. It is a true work of art.

I hope you are well, I imagine you are enjoying a mild winter in Murwillumbah.

I would love to hear from you, if you get a spare chance. What are your hobbies and interests (aside from making magnificent quilts)?

Warmest regards

Dear MR and MRS M,

I have just received your quilt and washing bag in the mail and I was truly blown away by the amount of detail and work you have put into making it for me. The deign is perfect and it reminds me of my son every time I look at it.

When I left my son was barely a month old and being away from him while he is growing up is extremely hard at times for both myself and my wife as it is our first child. The amazing work done by yourself and the other members of Aussie Hero Quilts has definitely brought smiles to the faces of many of our ships company and I am extremely humbled to be one of them.

I believe I may have served with your son a few years ago on HMAS Ballarat as the name definitely rings a bell.

I will be sure to cherish your quilt and washing bag for many years to come and hopefully pass it down to my son.

You have definitely brought a smile to my face and I am sure to the face of my Wife and Son when they see your amazing work.

A very big thank you to you and your family wishing you all the best.

Kind Regards,

Hi Ruth,

Thank you so much for my awesome Sydney Swans  laundry bag…!!! I really appreciate the time & work that you have put into making it for me. Please note that we did not get any mail for about 8 weeks as it was all stuck at the Israel/Egyptian border over customs issues & then I was lucky enough to go back to Perth for a few weeks. It was a  huge surprise for me when I came back & opened the box. Also thank you for the scarf, not that I need to wear it right now but as you know, Sydney are in the finals so I will be cheering them on… I have a few mates that are Power supporters so I can understand how hard it would’ve been making it, but appreciate it all the same….
I put the picture on the Swans Facebook page & already it has 360 likes & about 20 comments

Once again, thank you very much Ruth…..

Fondest Regards,

Dear Deni,
Thank you so much for the quilt and laundry bag. They are fantastic; I love the
colours and the pattern. I have started putting them to good use already and
will be something I will take back home to remember my first deployment for
many years to come.

I am an environmental health officer with the Air Force and work as part of the
medical team over here. My job entails doing inspections of facilities and
testing things like the water and air quality. The aim of the work I do is to
prevent our members from getting sick or injured so they can continue to
conduct their work.

Once again thank you so much for the time and effort you put in. 
Kind Regards,

Hi Jo

I gladly wish to inform you that I did infact receive my parcel and boy was I stoked with how it turned out.
I did realise in the letter that I didn’t give much to go off but it turned out great and I couldn’t have asked for a better result.   I’ll do my best to get a photo in an email soon but know that you’ve made one happy sailor

Again thank you very much

I hope this finds you well.

Yesterday in the mail I received my fantastic laundry bag, which I think is wonderful. I was not sure what to expect; my preferences I sent off were broad and probably a bit vague, but your design is undeniably a reflection of me. I sent a picture of it to my family last night and my daughter (also a sewer) was very admiring of the design, and she is not easily impressed.

Thank you also for the lovely letter which came with it. Knowing a bit more about you makes your gift of the laundry bag even more special. My in-laws live in XXXXX and, although that’s a fair distance from you, I can only agree that all the northern coast of NSW is a beautiful part of the world. I always enjoy my visits there, if only to escape the Canberra climate.

I can’t thank you enough for your dedication to what you do. Rest assured that my new laundry bag will get good use and lots of admiration.

Yours Sincerely

G’Day Cheryl,

I just wanted to write you a quick email and say you thank you so very much for making my quilt I LOVE it so my daughter is going to loose her mind when she receives it.
I have been in the Army for 16 years now and this is my 5th deployment and each time it gets harder and harder to leave my two kids behind, I do love my job and I love serving Australia overseas but it does get hard at times. So thank you very much for your support and your quilt really did make my day.

Well Cheryl I have about 7 weeks left of this deployment and then I will be home again. Thank you very much and take care.

Kind regards, 

Hi Cheryl,
Thank you very much for your contribution and effort in making the fantastic Quilt for myself.
I received it late at night with the huge amount of mail received that day.  It made my day when I received the parcel.
I was very impressed with the design and colours, and it matches the laundry bag I also received from your generous organisation. 
I now have the quilt proudly on my bed over here.
At the moment it is very hot, most days here get to the peak temperature around 47-50 degrees Celsius.
However the temperature in our rooms is much cooler, so it is nice to have a comfortable quilt.
We are very lucky to be able to call Australia home.  I am soon heading home for a short leave break and am very much looking forward to seeing my family and having some family time soon. We are heading to QLD for a week.  I have sent a picture of the quilt to my family and they were all very impressed also.
Again thank you very much for the great quilt.

Wishing you all …..

Hi Clarissa,

I just wanted to say a big thankyou for the laundry bag. I absolutely love it! 💕

Thank you for putting so much time, effort and love into it. I truly appreciate it! And having the Greek flag on there made me teary when I saw it, thinking of my grandparents, especially grandpa John.

I can’t thank you enough for your time and effort.

I have been in the Air Force approx. 23 years now and have thoroughly enjoyed it. Whilst I have done many trips over this way, I had never actually deployed so this is my first time away for an extended period. I have some great people around, but it will nice to get home and see the family and off course my dogs!

Thankyou again, and I wish your son a safe deployment.

Kind regards,


Hello Rita,

I just received the beautiful quilt you made along with all the other goodies. I’ve already shared all the sweets with the coalition partners I’m working with.

Thank you so much for my beautiful quilt, it is absolutely perfect and exactly what we had hoped for, it has brightened up my bedspace as you can see from the before and after photos. It will make a great heirloom and my daughter (5) will absolutely love it.  She turns six soon and unfortunately I’ll still be deployed, which upset her a lot before I left. This is my sixth deployment, and 3rd time to the Middle East Region, so hopefully I won’t have to go away again soon after I get back.

Anyway, thank you so much for your package, I hope you and your family are well and are able to get this ok.


Hello Leanne

What a wonderful surprise and delight your gift is! Sorry I haven’t had the opportunity to write to you earlier.

I am so impressed with your quilt and so is everyone else. It is obvious your take pride in your work as demonstrated by the attention  to detail and the originality of your patterns, design and colours. Everyone is very impressed with the Australiana theme – its prefect!

 Despite temperatures over 45 C every day and in the mid 30’s at night,, your quilt is proudly sprawled across my bed. It is a wonderful thing you and your helpers do, and I can attest that your work and end product is very much appreciated by all. In fact, after I was showing your work off, a number of other Officers decided they also need one.

You girls do extraordinary work- its a great morale booster not to mention receiving a lifetime gift from countrymen who appreciate our efforts and care for us.

Thank you so much! …..

Hello Maree W

I’d just like to say thank you for taking to time to sew up the laundry bag which ended up being sent to me whilst I was in Malaysia. It was very thoughtful and myself and all the boys appreciated the work you and others have done for us. Wishing you all the best.

Kind Regards,

Good afternoon Ruth.
I write this e-mail to express my thanks for the time you have spent to craft my Maroons & Cowboys NRL theme laundry bag. I could not have asked for a better design and I absolutely love the work you have done! It certainly brought a smile to my face when I opened my parcel to find the laundry bag; the packet of TimTams was icing on the cake (I did end up sharing the TimTams around my section, they are all as grateful for the package as I am hah!).
I’m near the end of my first deployment now, with a couple of months left until I return back home. For the most part this trip has been great and has definitely been an eye opener (it’s also been my first time travelling outside of Australia!). While the trip has been great, the days do feel like they are getting longer as we get closer to the end. Doing the same tasks day in and day out with limited means to break up the monotony of the daily routine does make things a bit tough mentally. Having something like a laundry bag personally made for me has definitely raised my spirits and will make the next several weeks a lot easier to work through! Not only has it added a bit of colour to my room (I hang it on the back of my chair so it’s the first thing I see when I return from work), but it is a great way of expressing myself as being someone other than just a military person on base (I’m also a proud Cowboys and Maroons supporter, and this is clearly visible whenever I carry my laundry bag down to do some washing!).
For me personally, it is also a daily reminder that despite how bad a day I might have over here, there are people back home who are thinking of me; not just family but also people who are willing to take the time out of their days to craft a gift for a stranger overseas. Whenever I get back to my room after work, the first thing I see is my Cowboys&Maroons laundry bag and no matter what my mood may be, seeing this brightens my day, every day.
Anyway, I best get back to work now. Once again, many thanks to you for the time and effort you have put into crafting my laundry bag. The design was spot-on and I absolutely love it! It has done more than just brighten my day; it is a regular morale booster at the end of every day, and will be so until the end of deployment and beyond!

Thank you!

I can not thank you all enough for the effort and love that goes into these beautiful Quilts and Laundry Bags.
I received mine last week and was just blown away with them both. They are just incredible and receiving these has really added something special to my deployment.
I can’t even begin to describe the happiness you all bring to these deployed personnel when they receive these home made packages of love, you all go above and beyond and let me insure you it makes a huge difference!

So from the bottom of my heart, thank you!

Quilt by Anne Dy

Laundry bag by Carol Wr

Good evening Bridget,
Thank you so much.
I received your parcel this evening and all I can say is WOW! What a magnificent quilt you and Kerri have created. You have captured a snapshot of me on my deployment that I will be able to keep for many years to come.
I have been overwhelmed by the support the Australian Defence Force members receive from proud Australians like you and all who support Aussie Hero Quilts.
Thank you once again, I am proud to be serving our country and greatly appreciate your quilt…….and included sweets.

Hello Ruth,

I have just received your laundry bag in the mail today. Thank you so much! It is really lovely and most certainly brightened my day. I really appreciate the time and effort you have put in to making this product; you can tell it is really well made.

Thank you again!

G’day Jean,

I would like to thank you for the laundry bag that you made and sent off to me. The design is great and size of the bag, makes laundry even easier now. Thank you for your time, materials, creativity and overall your support. 

It is easy to stay here and keep doing our job with the support of everyday Australians like yourself at home. Support that we have received come in many forms, such as your group’s quilts and laundry bags, random soldier care packs, and messages of support. It all helps and reminds us of home and what awaits our return. Please pass on my thanks and wishes to all involved in the many projects you support. I think you are all doing a better job than us, as we are only doing what is expected of us but you are going above and beyond with your support. Thank you.  

Anyway keep enjoying your travel, once again it was fantastic to receive your laundry bag and I am very appreciative of it, your time and effort. 

Kind regards

Ma’am (Jean B),
I just received your laundry bag and would like to thank you for your efforts. I love the design as it captures everything that I am missing over here in the desert of Afghanistan. I can tell you that the efforts that you have gone to, along with the other volunteers at Aussie Heroes are is very much appreciated by the Sailors, Soldiers and Airmen/women serving overseas, throughout the world.
This little bit of kindness can change a long and lonely day completely around, the affect that it can have can be clearly seen in the eyes of the recipients. A little piece of love from a stranger back home.
On my previous tour to the Middle East region I had the pleasure of visiting countries from Bahrain and the UAE through to Jordan up in the Red Sea. One of the highlights for me was a couple of days in Tanzania, Not quite enough time to go on a Safari but I had a great time enjoying the local foods and customs.
Well, Thank you again for my laundry bag and I wish you and your family all the best. I hope you get to go back to Africa soon and that you stay safe on your travels.

Thank you Jean.

What great messages. 
Makes me want to keep sewing!

Till next time… keep spreading the word and happy stitching!
Jan-Maree xxx

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