Gratitide Post 1 Jan 2020

Written by AHQ

1 January 2020

Good morning all,

Welcome to 2020, a New  Year and a New Decade. Here’s hoping it is  agood one for all and especially for all invovled with Aussie Heroes. The start of a new year is a good time to start in the spirit of gratitude. 

Thank you to all those who sew for us and who contribute to Aussie Heroes in any way at all.

Thank you to those who are our recipients and your loved ones. We so appreciate you. 

And finally, thank you to those who are helping us to grow Aussie Heroes into a Registered Charity. 

Lots of exciting things to look forward to in the future so let’s see where 2020 takes us. 

For now, sit back and enjoy these fabulous thank you messages. 

Hi Jenni

I was just emailing you to thank you for your amazing quilt that you made for me I could not believe how good it was once I opened up the package quite a few of the other members I work with have received there Aussie Hero Quilts as well but by far the one that you were able to make me is the best one I have seen so far. It was a great gift to receive before Christmas and the care package you sent over as well has kept me well and truly stocked up with treats as well.

I suppose I should let you know a little about my self I am an Aircraft Structural Technician or a Basher as most people call us, basically a sheetmetal worker for aircraft.   I work on the E7 wedgetail aircraft and this is my first deployment with the RAAF and being over Christmas is a bit hard being away from family during this time but we will be back home sooner than later so cant wait!

But by far my main passion in life is Motorcycles mainly dirtbikes as you may have guessed I currently own 5 different motorcycles at the moment and I have ridden and raced dirtbikes for as long as I can remember so you definitely hit the nail on the head with quilt you knocked up for me.

Thank you again for all the work you and everyone else at Aussie Hero Quilts does for everyone that is over here really blows my mind the generosity you all have to spend the time to make these amazing quilts.

I have attached a photo of me with my amazing quilt in front of where we have been staying for the past few months.

Thanks Again and keep up the awesome work.


Dear Robyn,

I hope this finds you well, I am emailing you (extremely late!) to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for the bag you made me. I felt so lucky to receive your bag as it was very personal especially with the letter that accompanied it (not everyone gets a letter). I was the envy of my mess (a mess in the Navy is where we sleep, unlike the army and RAAF the mess is where they eat) when i pulled it out of the bag and said “Hey! i got a letter too”. I received my bag when I was at sea on HMAS Adelaide deployed in the South West pacific for regional engagement. it was a few months away from home which gets tough when you have family waiting on you. I have a girlfriend of ten years so it gets tough, but the gifts you and your group send us are an amazing morale boost and a nice thought of home. 

It’s funny I received your bag when I was so far away and to read you are from Penrith made me smile as I live on the south coast of NSW at the small town of Gerringong. so It is really not far away, I had to laugh. At the time I received your bag, I was an avionics technician which basically means an electrician on aircraft. The aircraft i worked on is called the MRH-90 and is part of 808 Squadron, we then get attached to which ever ship requires our capability. 

Since then however I have transferred jobs and am currently under training to become an Aircrewman (still in the Navy), infact I graduate course in February (very excited). An Aircrewman is the person in the back of the helicopter that carries out all the utility roles the aircraft conducts such as winching a fellow Aircrewman down the wire to pick people up or infact we can go “down the wire” also. We can be dispatched into the water to swim and save people and we also help to control the aircraft into confined areas to land using our voice (sometimes the areas are so small the pilot cannot see where he is landing, so we have our head out the door and guide them to the ground safely). We are the person in the back that is waving out the door when you see a helicopter fly past. Makes me smile, I love it. 

I really do appreciate the gift and reading the note brought a tear to my eye when i received it, its a great idea to include that. The bags are extremely functional for us and we use them every single day at sea, we grow quite attached to them and we become quite proud of them. the bags you all make are made well and the thick, double layer of material are extremely important for longevity as our ships decks are like bitumen which is where the bags are stored a lot of the time. Thank you so much i cannot say it enough.

All the love for you and your congregation, tell them all thanks, it makes me proud to know there are people out there that think of us when we are away.


Hi Sue,
 You have generously made my Aussie Hero Quilt for my deployment on OPERATION ACCORDION 2019.

   I first joined the RAAF in 2011 where I did my Initial Employment Training (IET) as an Avionics Technician at Wagga Wagga. Soon after I was posted to 2SQN where I currently work on the AEW&C E-7A Aircraft.
  This is my 3rd deployment with 2SQN however it will probably be my last as I’m posted to  RAAF Base Edinburgh in Adelaide upon my return to Australia.

  I have a wonderful little dog called Bailey, she’s a Kelpie x Poodle and has a huge personality that i miss dearly whilst I am here. I’m sure she’s having a lovely time being babysat on the farm with mum and dad. I hope she likes the Idea of Adelaide haha.
  My mother is also part of a quilt making benefit called ‘Harden-Murrumburrah Archies Army’. They have a Facebook page if you wish to look them up. Archie’s Army makes individual quilts for sick children in the hospital to cheer them up through hard times. Archie was my cousin’s son who tragically died of Mitochondria in 2015, most unfortunately when I was away on my 1sr Deployment. In 2018 I did a 35km walk through Canberra with my family who walks every year to raise awareness for a cure for Mito. It was bloody hard! There is a Facebook page called ‘The Bloody Long Walk’ if you wish to look that up too.
  Their work and yours is echoed through the smiles you put on the people’s faces receiving their quilts to cherish for a lifetime. You have done an excellent job with the MARVEL characters and 2SQN insignia on mine. I am very grateful and hope that in my time I can give back and contribute in a positive way like you and so many others do for strangers in times of hardship.

  I’m always amazed at how fast these quilts are made for everyone on deployment! My mum is still knitting me a jumper for my Birthday (which was in June). I think it will be my Christmas  present now. haha.

  Keep up the great work! Everyone is extremely grateful for the added colour and fun to their rooms when far away from home.
 Many thanks 

Good evening Ruth,

I was fortunate enough to receive a laundry bag from you when I was deployed in Iraq! I just wanted to thank you for such a kind gift. The small things like that and knowing we are appreciated makes the time there go quicker. I’m finally home, still using the bag! I showed my mother and she loved it as well. I surprised her at her home with my father, they are both very happy I am home for Christmas! I hope you receive good karma and have a wonderful Christmas and new year! 
Thank you again!


Dear Ellen. 

I want to thank you firstly for what you and the other quilters do. But secondly for what you did for me. I received your quilt today and I am speechless. I was overwhelmed when I opened it as it is absolutely perfect.
This is my second tour of Afghanistan. I was here 2011 and was part of a detention management team that ran a detention facility here. This time around I’m a shift supervisor of the international military police. I work with a small team of Australian and Lithuanian soldiers. 

I was given extremely short notice to come over. 12 days. So leaving my family was extremely difficult. My two young daughters are very much over this tour and missing me. I’m going to be home next Month though and can’t wait. Will get home just in time to see my eldest start prep and and youngest move into kindy. 

I love that in your letter you talked about your military family. So much history and pride would run through your family. But I also love how you caravan and see Australia. I wish my kids would travel better I would love for them to see this beautiful country of ours. 
I hope you and your family are staying safe from all the fires to.

Ellen you made my day. I will get a picture with the quilt when I can. However I will send you some pics of where I am and who I am. 

Thanks again. 

Hey Deb,
Sorry for the delayed response as I’ve been moving around alot for the past few weeks. 

Thank you so much for everything including your kind words, I am extremely happy with the design and couldn’t ask for better. 

Again many thanks,

Good Afternoon Deb

I wanted to thank you for the laundry bag you made, my little brother will absolutely love it !!

It was so nice to read the letter from you and hearing a little bit about yourself,

I am based in Townsville and I also do MMA boxing, Muay Thai and have just started BJJ ( Brazilian Jujitsu) it’s a tough sport but I love the guys I train with and it’s so much more fun than lifting weights alone in the gym haha

I have just come out of Kabul Afghanistan and it’s starting to snow there and get really cold, I’m towards the end of my tour now and back in the UAE with much more pleasant weather J

Thank you once again for the gifts and the Laundry bag J

Thank you,

I am the very proud owner of my Aussie Quit today.   Respect goes out to Lynn F who done more than an expectional job.


Hi Bev,

I just wanted to say how grateful I am for the laundry bag that arrived today in the post.

The timing couldn’t have been better with Christmas next week.

The gift is so thoughtful and I really appreciate it. The laundry bags and quilts provide us with a valuable reminder of home, often at the time we need it most.

I have completed two months of the deployment so far and am really enjoying it. I am working with a great team here in the desert and really enjoy the role of being a Chaplain. The only difficult part is being away from my wife and three teenage sons back home in Australia.

Thanks too for mentioning your family’s links with service life . . . it really is a great contribution that they have each made. My grandfather was a Radio Technician for RAAF with 76SQN working in the Pacific during WW2. My wife also works with children with learning difficulties at a local primary school . . . she also finds it really rewarding.

Funnily enough our Executive Officer here also worked as an Apprentice at HMAS Narimba, just like your husband.

I was also happy to read that your husband is a mad magpie like me . . . here’s hoping there might be some success around the corner next year.

Anyway . . . Merry Christmas to you and your family and thanks again for sending me such a thoughtful gift.

To dear Rowena,
Thank you very much for my lovely laundry bag – it’s far too nice for dirty washing!
My two items I have received from AHQ are the most thoughtful and wonderful gifts I have ever received – thank you so much!
This recent trip to the Middle East was my third one, but my first since becoming a mum, so I felt this one a lot harder. My kids are 3 and 1. This is the first time I have asked for an AHQ or laundry bag and I am so glad I did! I am looking forward to using the bag on my many trips I will undertake at 11 Squadron over the next two years.
I wish you and your family a lovely Christmas and all the best for 2020.

Good Morning Lynn and Wendy,

This is just an email to let you know that I have received my quilt and I absolutely love it.

I am so grateful for the effort, time and thought that has gone into the quilt and it certainly made a great end to 2019.

Also, I would like to thank you for your letters and kind words. Learning more about you and your history and your reasons for doing this have made me extremely proud to be in the Royal Australian Navy and happy to serve and defend our beautiful country.

I appreciate all the you do for the Australian Defence Force – it certainly means a lot to us to have support from the ashore – especially when we have been far from home for a long time.

Again, thank you very much and I hope you and your families have a safe and merry holiday season.


            I am a Petty Officer CIS and was posted to Sirius in February 2019. I wanted to thank you for taking the time to make the laundry bag I received from Aussie Hero Quilts made by you.

It is orange and has butterflies on it and when I chose it the boss told me that it was for girls. It’s funny because I chose it to remind me of my three daughters while I was away.

I really appreciate the gesture and hope this finds you well. Enjoy the holidays – hopefully it’s not too much of a three ring Circus/zoo this year.

Warm regards,

Dear Lynn,
                I am the recent recipient of a glorious quilt which you made for me. As you are aware, I’m currently deployed in the Middle East but I am normally posted to Darwin and have been posted there for the last 4 years.

I was born and raised in the North East of England in a small town just outside of Middlesbrough, County Durham. During school I met my now wife at the age of 15 and have been together since. We will be celebrating our 27thAnniversary in February 2020. After school I joined the Royal Signals, British Army, at the age of 18 and continued to serve in the British Army for 23 years (1989 – 2012). The Forces has always been my life and one of the things in my life that I would never chance. My wife has been at my side throughout my military career and we have 3 children (not quite children, 2 sons aged 28 & 25 and a daughter aged 21). I am the first and only member in my family to every join the Military so had no real idea what to expect, but as I said, a decision I am glad I made and would never regret it.

After serving my time in the British Army I ended up being employed by a civilian employer, however I craved for the lifestyle of the military so much, my wife and I decided to apply for the Australian Defence Force. We had never been to Australia but I knew if it meant I was going to be a member of the best family anyone could ask for, again, we were willing to pack up and move half way across the world to do that. Fortunately for me, the ADF accepted me into the Signals and we moved across to Melbourne in October 2012.

Being deployed overseas is always a difficult time for members, being away from family, especially over the Christmas period is challenging, however, to receive quilts and laundry bags which have personally been made by ladies like yourself is a huge morale boost. Aussie Hero quilts and laundry bags is a fantastic organisation and your work efforts are certainly recognised and appreciated by serving members deployed. A big thought that enters most soldiers minds, especially my own, is how the Australia people feel about what we are doing here, and to know that they support us on our mission is a great relief and a confirmation that we are doing the right thing.

I have approximately 3 months remaining of my tour and will return back to  my family, which I can’t wait for. The time here has been a great experience for me as this is my first deployment with Australian soldiers. I have deployed numerous times with the Brits but this experience will remain with me for the rest of my life.

To close off, I would once again like to personally thank you for the time you invested into making my quilt, and I will never stop appreciating the work that you all do. Your support towards serving and injury members is exceptional and we are all proud of the support you provide.

Take care and I am sure that you will receive a lot more letters like this in the future from members deployed, showing their appreciation.

All the Best and have a very happy Christmas and a fantastic New Year.

Dear Jean, 

Thank you for your homemade laundry bag. I use it all the time! It is very humbling to be thought of by everyone back home, and is a reminder of why I love my job.

Once again, thank you for your very thoughtful gift.

Best wishes,

Dear Bridget,
Firstly thank you so much for the quilt and laundry bag, they are absolutely amazing! They are far beyond what I thought was possible. My favourite part are the blue and maroon zig zags, it’s unbelievable what you have done!
By way of introduction I am Captain in the Australian Army. As you would have noticed by doing the quilt I am an Artillery Officer and have been in Baghdad for the past few months. When I am back in Australia I am posted to Woodside Barracks in the Adelaide Hills. I am sorry for the delay in responding but I actually just returned back to Australia yesterday. The back end of my trip was full up with handing over my position to the oncoming Australian Officer.
Again, I am so thankful for my quilt it is truly amazing. You sent it right at the perfect time, the weather in Baghdad dropped in temperature significantly and I needed a double blanket urgently!
I wish you and your family a very happy holiday season and again thank you so much for the work you are doing. I have attached a small token of my appreciation in the form of a eGift card for Spotlight. 
Best wishes,

Good Morning

I am just writing to you to thank you for the many quilted laundry bags that we have received recently.  I am the Company Sargent Major for the current Rifle Company Butterworth Rotation 128 in Malaysia, we have 120 people deployed with us from many Army Reserve units across Australia.  This is my third rotation to Malaysia in my 34 years of service.

We all received our bags within the first few days of our arrival and they have been very useful to us in putting our kit in for various reasons and uses and they brighten up the rooms a bit more than grey paint and army kit stacked in the corner of the room .
Our deployment to date has been very busy with a 3 week pre deployment period in Nov and deploying in early Dec to Malaysia.  To date we have been out doing our Jungle training phase and will soon commence a period of range practices. 

Christmas for us will be a quiet affair with some of the company having returned to Australia for Christmas leave.  Those of us who remain will be departing on a history tour of the WWII and Malayan Emergency battle grounds and sites of interest for 7 days on boxing day.  Over all everyone is in good spirits with many of our company experiencing their first trip overseas and not on a holiday.  They are going places and seeing things that the average tourist would not see, smell or taste so this is a truly unique opportunity for them which they will remember for many years for both good and bad reasons, local leave and good food being the good reasons and, ration packs and the wet jungle with leeches being the bad reasons.

Once again thank you and  your organisation and the many volunteers who make the time to make the bags and quilts for us we truly appreciated it.  My mum is here self an avid quilter and is part of a sewing group that makes many items for charities, hospitals, and children overseas living in poverty or who have just been dealt a bad hand in life and trying to make ends meet and survive.

That is all for now so till next time… keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Love Jan-Maree xx

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