Thanks on Thursday

Written by ahq_admin

31 July 2014

G’day folks.  Well what a busy few days I have had thanks to all of you who share my post on Monday night.  I have been typing as fast as I can to keep up with the enquiries and requests for information and that is a great problem to have.  Thank you so much to all of you who shared the post.   As of that time that I write this that post, according to the stats on Facebook has reached over 28000 people and has had over 380 page shares!  In addition we gained over well over 150 new followers.   Thanks so much for all your support everyone.  It means the world to me but more importantly, it means more quilts and laundry bags for our serving men and women.

We are a couple of days late but here are this weeks Gratitude messages.

This first photo is a special one.  Earlier this year there was an accident at Shoalwater Bay Firing Range and this young man was injured.   I was contacted before I went to Townsville at the end of June and whilst on my stop over in Brisbane I was able to hand over a quilt to be given to him at a later date.  He had a short time home with family on convalescent leave and then had to return to the base hospital.  He was presented with his quilt just after returning and was kind enough to consent to the photo and to having it published.  We wish him all the best in his recovery.

The quilt itself was made by Louise and although you can’t see them in this picture it features some lovely embroideries by Donna.

As you know AB Cameron Green was presented with a quilt recently in hospital where he is waging his own war against cancer.   His quilt is emblazened in the Arsenal colours on one side and messages from his ship mates on the other side, shown here being held my Cameron’s Dad and myself.  

Not long after delivering the quilt i received this message from the Captain of HMAS Darwin

Your teams efforts in making this quilt has been exceptional and I know it has been lovingly made from the greatest Aussie Heroes in Australia. From the bottom of my heart, I would like to thank you all, for doing this for Cameron, his family and his ship mates. I truly hope that Cameron’s beloved Arsenal, emblazoned on this quilt, is the one thing that can help him get through this difficult time and I hope that he can also see from his ship mates comments, that you have also lovingly stitched on this quilt, that ‘he will never walk alone’ in this fight. 

Next the following post appeared on the HMAS Darwin Facebook page.

Codename: Operation Cover Cameron, team members, 
Codename: Operation Cover Cameron.
Team Members : Jan-Maree Ball and her dedicated and loyal team of Aussie Heroes.
Mission: To make a special member of HMAS Darwin Ship’s Company, Able Seaman Combat Systems Operator Cameron Green, the most amazing Arsenal quilt and laundry bag.
Outcome: Accomplished

On behalf of all of the crew of HMAS Darwin, we would like to impart our most sincere thanks to Jan-Maree Ball, Maridy Morrison, Rita M, Debbie, Lynn and all the Aussie Heroes around Australia that volunteered their time and wonderful gift, to put a smile and lift the spirits of a ship mate that is going through a difficult time. All that you have done for Cameron and his family and all the crew of HMAS Darwin during our deployment has been amazing and we will all treasure our special gifts for the rest of our lives. Thankyou Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags) and speedy recovery Cameron, we will be seeing you very soon.

And finally we had a lovely message from Cameron’s mother and the rest of his family.

Dear Jan and team
I would like again to give my thanks to your team of quilters for such great heartfelt work put into producing the Arsenal quilt. Cameron’s grandparents and aunts and uncles back in the UK are also, I know, very touched by this act kindness from your team. I am now in Sydney whilst my husband Rob is back in Brisbane, so have been able see the quilt for myself, with Cameron also allowing me to read the messages on the back!
We are getting nearer to the time for his operation, and transfer up to Brisbane, which will make life easier for all. We will update you on his progress, especially when he is once again upright, and back to towering over us all.
Once again thank you,

Jo and family. 


And finally another special photo following on in the theme of hospitals.  Our three gorgeous quilts made from the Brisbane dinner challenge blocks have made it to Al Minhad Air Base and are now available for use as required by any of our Aussie who are admitted during their deployment.  

This quilt was made by Sue P and a thank you message shared last week but I had to wait to know I had permission to share the photo.


Hello Joan and Robin,

I am a deployed member within the ADF

I was just writing to thank you for your gift that I have just received. The brightly coloured laundry bag reminds me of my daughter back home in Australia. It is comforting to know that people like you still exist, 

My Regards, 


Hello Evelyn,

Thank you very much for the quilt (Black Diamond). There are a few other people overseas with me who have received quilts too, so at some stage we will get a group photo with them all to send back to Australia. I will also ensure I send you a personal copy too.

Your family sounds very nice and I am glad to hear they provide you with great support. I would agree with them, as it is excellent work you are doing especially for the charitable organisations. You are very good at what you do, as I can clearly see from mine.

Thanks again

The following quilt top and back were donated by Julie, quilted by Robin and bound and sent off by Evelyn

Hello Evelyn,

Thank you very much for your gifts. I received my quilt in the mail yesterday, but with our time difference, best to say sometime on the afternoon of Tuesday the 20th, our time, or late evening Australian time.

It is always wonderful to see how the folks at home appreciate what we do, and very delightful to get something so personal, hand made, aimed toward the recipient’s tastes. Aside from charity collections and other forms of donation, I’ve never actually provided a gift like this for someone I have never met. It does bring a smile to think that people do this for others who aren’t grandchildren, nieces, nephews or known to each other in any other way. 

Ancient Egypt, along with Greece and Rome, is one of my interests. I’ve always been an avid fan of the ancient world, probably more so because everything back then was new, life was something of an adventure, shorter though it may have been at the time. Most of the world hadn’t been explored, and even a neighboring city, town or tribe was a new culture to discover.
That aspect of the trip is one of my favorites, being in a new place, with new people, and taking advantage of our rest and relaxation opportunities to take in the local culture.

I must confess I’ve never really studied my family roots for the past few hundred years. Of the Bristow side to our family, I know my grandfathers elder brother Frank, was a soldier, but not much else of that part of my family. My uncle, prior to his death, was our family historian. His theory was we originated with Stephen De Burstow in England, after the battle of Hastings.

As for myself, I’m a soldier in my 30s, who has never really chosen a life to settle into. I’ve been in the Victorian police for a while and I had joined my local CFA when I was younger. I spent some time in the navy before coming over to the army, and to be honest, I may move onto something else when I return from my overseas trip. Whether this be to a different role within the army, or leaving to do a similar  job as a civilian, I’m not sure yet. 

Fortunately, depending on your perspective, I have neither a wife nor children, so my erratic life will not impact others too harshly. 

It is good to hear of others success stories too. despite what you have lost, it is always good to know the human spirit can overcome such horrible adversities, but not easy to see why we need to. 

I have included a couple of shots of my new quilt in-situ, and while it may not be time to use it yet, later in the year will definitely see the need.

The crossword book will come in handy in the evenings between work ending and dinner, where we have just enough free time to actually relax, but no enough to carry out a game of football or anything like that. The lollies however didn’t last too long. As is our custom here, we share the bounty we receive from home in that regard, and fruit tingles are somewhat popular, although a little bit of a shock to the one poor girl who had never tried them. 

Thank you again Evelyn for your work and support, and please give my thanks and regards to Robin and Julie.

Kind regards

Kind regards,

Hello Jan-Maree, Jill and Evelyn 

I have received my quilt and laundry bags.  I appreciated the kindness and the time you put into completing the quilt and laundry bags. I have deployed previously and it is the first time I have received such generous items from such genuine kind and thoughtful people. 

I appreciated the letters and the extra items have been shared around and consumed with vigour from everyone I work with.  I’m still waiting on someone to mess up the rubic cube. 

Your work not only to the ADF but to the other needy organisations makes me very humble and respect your dedication even more. Everyone here that receives the items show everyone and their eyes light up with genuine appreciation. It is a wonder to see and look forward to each mail day to watch the next person opening there package and enjoy the moment of normality. 

God bless you all. 


Hi Pennie,

Thanks for the care package. I have to say this is my forth trip and I’ve never received one from someone I didn’t know. Considering it was my first package for the trip it brought back a lot of good memories from previous trips when you used to get some goodies to eat and items you are familiar with from home. You are right about the beanie, won’t be needing that on this trip, but I will turn my A/C down as far as it goes to give it a test run.

I have a huge respect for nurses and I’m suprised you find the time to do what you do for us. From everyone here in sunny Dubai, thanks for the packages and don’t forget to thank your mother in law as well. 


The following email is from the person who requested the quilt for a friend of her’s.

Hi Jan-Maree!

I hope this email finds you well 🙂
The quilt looks fantastic! I was speaking with XXXXX’s wife, Rachel, yesterday and she mentioned that it arrived safely. XXXXX LOVES IT! He was very surprised as he wasn’t expecting anything in the post. It’s now proudly being displayed in XXXX’s room.

Thanks again! Aussie Hero Quilts is a brilliant organisation that brings so much delight to serving members who are missing home! I hope that you can continue all of this great work for a long, long time into the future! I have an auntie who does quilting and was thinking of recommending that she join up to Aussie Hero Quilts. What do you think?

Warm regards,

Hello Gale and Jenny,

I just wanted to write a quick note to say a very big thank you for my beautiful quilt.  XXXX gave it to me last week and it was a lovely surprise.   The orange and black go so well in my accommodation. 

This is a really wonderful gesture and very much appreciated.  I received another quilt during my deployment in 2011-2012 when XXX  (our postmistress from Egypt)  was here which I also treasure.  As you  may have been told I discharged from the Army in early 2013 (after 30 years’ service) and came back to North Camp as a civilian.  As you can see by the news of late that Israel/Gaza are at war and Egypt is still very unpredictable.  Makes our lives here quite interesting to say the least.

I wish you all the very best and thank you once again.

Regards to you too Jan-Maree


The following I thought I would share with you as it is part of a request email I received.

I wanted to let you know how much the quilts mean to the deployed members and the pride and sense of purpose that your quilts provide.  Although I haven’t been deployed for too long, I have been called into many offices to view the newly arrived quilt.  The recipients are always very excited to open their parcel and we are all very impressed with the work and quality.


  1. The Adelaide chapter of AHQ met for a sew and lunch at Pennie’s house last Friday. Present were Mary, Sue A and Anne D, and much was achieved!!  Great news ladies.

A quick shout out and happy birthday to Stephanie T who has quilted over 150 quilts for us in the last couple of years.  Stephanie snuck her birthday in ALMOST without me knowing so I hope you had a wonderful day Stephanie.  xxx

And finally, the following are those who have sent off their quilts and laundry bags this week (as far as I know at 130pm today).  If your name is not on the list and you think it should be, please let me know.  It has been frantically busy since Monday so I am not confident that I caught all the dispatches as I should have.

Barbara F
Deb B
Louise (and Debbie)
Louise from Dolphin Quilters
Adele (via Lynda)
Steph N
Sue A

AND absolutely last thing – I am going to be in Canberra over night next Thursday and most of Friday.  Now sure how many people we have in Canberra but if you want to catch up while I am down there let me know.

Till next time………………..keep spreading the word and happy stitching .  JMxx

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