The following entries are letters, notes or emails received by Operation First Response from wounded Heroes or their family members. Operation First Response shares these comments so you, the public, can see what your donations have done to help.

I want to start by saying that Operation First Response as a team is amazing. This team operates and functions at a high level and contributes resources and time to each Veteran they serve. As an OIF Veteran myself and a VA employee who serves OEF/OIF/OND Veterans as part of the Returning Combat Vet Team they go above and beyond for the Veterans that I refer. I get Vets with all kinds of different financial issues and usually they have tried everything in their power to resolve their own issues but when their back is against the wall and they have nowhere else to turn OFR has come through to lift huge weights off these Vets backs so that they can push on with their mission. You provide more than just financial support, you provide hope that tomorrow will be a little bit easier. When Vets think that society has given up on them you show them that there are people out there that really care for their well being. More organizations should model themselves according to how Operation First Response handles their affairs. You do your job with care and enthusiasm and Vets are able to tell that you are the real deal. Keep up the great work OFR!

SSG LEIGH PAZ

“I contacted OFR as the veteran that I was working with had an outstanding utility bill. The veteran and myself exhausted all avenues for assistance locally. We even reached out to national organizations. We were able to cover a small portion of the outstanding bill - many organizations could not assist for various reasons. The veteran was beginning to become gloomy. The veteran did not have power, nor was he able to maintain many of his medications, including insulin for his diabetes. I reached out to OFR, who coordinated with both me and the veteran. We were able to get the documents needed by OFR submitted and within a couple hours, Sarah advised me that this organization as going to cover this electric bill. OFR not only covered the veteran's electric bill, they also were able to lift his spirits as he realized that an organization listened, heard and considered him and his circumstances on an individual level. Thank you, OFR. And thank you OFR staff.”

MS. T

OFR Team, what kind of person would I be to not follow up to offer a most sincere thank you. My gratitude cannot be expressed in words but maybe if you close your eyes for a brief moment and see a beautiful child opening a few gifts on Christmas morning and that SMILE that comes with that. You guys do that for families every day. Again, my words will never be enough but maybe a promise to pay it forward when things turn around for me and I have faith that turn around they will.
–MICHAEL SANDER

MICHAEL SANDER

This is the second time in my tenure as the Commander that Operation First Response has not only come through, but done so amazing fast. I can’t thank you enough for your responsiveness and willingness to support. Your organization is a force-multiplier and on behalf of the entire Battalion, we are very grateful.

LTCOL JESSE KEMP

I would like to thank Operation First Response for the assistance I was given in finding a Water Filter System for my family. Honestly I was hoping(best case scenario) that we could get a no interest loan or a small discount on a system. Operation First Response would hear none of it rather they got the entire water system for free from a top of the line company.(Pelican Water Filters) The system is a whole home system that normally costs about as much as a decent used car but because of the Hard work of PJ from Operation First Response and the extreme generosity of Pelican Water Systems my family was blessed in these financially tough times with not having to spend a dime. The system is also being installed by Chuck from Brad Malley Well Drilling who are donating their time. I have had some experience with Vets ORG's and have heard some disturbing stuff but I would never forgive myself if I didn’t mention the extent all of these people went to help my family and I. It’s really not the financial part that impresses me(well kinda) it was the quickness with which everyone involved stepped up to help. I spent more time getting predeployment shots than I did waiting for a response from OFR. So again Thank You so much your caring is much appreciated.

BRIAN CURRY

When I got emails back stating that my case is being worked on and then an email telling me that OFR is going to help me in my time of need, all I felt was "relief" knowing I can breathe again because of the generosity of the donators and staff of OFR.
I hit "rock bottom" financially and when I received help from OFR and their donators it helped tremendously with my PTSD and I'm extremely grateful.

Shawnlee A

I am Cristal Cordova, Wife of Iraq Veteran/former Marine Adrian Cordova. We have 4 children and have fallen on hard times. Tonia Sargent referred us to Operation First Response, to possibly seek assistance. So I did. And despite of my husband’s OTH discharge, which is currently in the process of a reversal toward Honorable discharge. Operation First Response, still reached out to my family and I and gave us a lending hand. The people at Operation First Response are angels in disguise. We are forever in your debt. Thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts. God Bless!

CORDOVA FAMILY

We just wanted to write and say thank you, your organization saved us. We will be able to keep the lights on and we will be able to put gas in the truck and keep our doctor’s appointments. Thank you a million times, as soon as we are able you will be the organization we give to. Thank you again

DEREK VARGAS

I don't know how else to thank you for your generosity in assisting me and our wounded veterans in our financial hardships. I appreciate the incredibly fast response and immediate action taken, as I simultaneously contacted other organizations and have yet to hear any word back from most of them even for just an application. Your organization has obviously got things well under control and your generosity and care provided surely explains why you must be low on funding . If for any reason I can ever be of assistance, please, please let me know. Thank you again so much… Hope you enjoy the rest of your week!

SSG RYAN GOEDE

Oh my!!! God Bless all of you!Thank you so much. I am crying to know that I have been blessed with Angels like you. There are days that I wonder if some people realize what we went through for this great country of ours and now I do not have to wonder any longer. Anytime I have a thought like this I will think of your outstanding organization that is willing to help a disabled veteran in a time of need. You don't know how much this means to me and my family to have this burden lifted from us. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I know one day I will be able to repay you for your kindness and help another Veteran out that needs a little help along the way like I do right now. Brighter days are coming my way and you have proved that.

MAUREEN LUJAN

Although your case load and funding are to great and too little to assist me at this time, you have assisted my family and I in the past. Just recently your organization helped me with paying my electric bill on the very same day the electric company said they were going to shut the power off to my home, it is because of organizations such as yourselves, that give us Veterans, and our families that much needed help when we are at a hard point in our lives. Which in turn, reduces the stress of the situation and gives us time to collect ourselves, regroup and get ahead of the problem. on behalf of myself and my family, I would like to say thank you for all of your hard work and dedication to the Veterans of the United States, your staff goes well above and way beyond the call of duty. I’ve been working closely with a wonderful woman named Crystal, who has helped me in more ways than she even knows. Not only in finding alternative resources to help with my current situation, but by lending a concerned ear and actually taking the time to hear my frustrations, concerns and opinions. It is because of outstanding staff members like Crystal that make for such an outstanding organization. On behalf of myself, my family and all my Veteran brothers and sisters that you have helped, and have yet to help, I thank you, you do more for us than I think you could ever realize. Sincerely,

JAMES GORMALLY SPC U.S. ARMY (RET.)

Thank you all with all our hearts. This has been the biggest trying time of our lives and you came through like true heroes. When I needed help the most you guys were there When you couldn't do anymore for me you found all the right people that could. At the same time kept in touch with me to make sure everything was going smoothy. This is by far the best organization in the world when it comes to help a warrior in need. The blessings you have given are countless. I was in the whole one day and three days later I was right back on my feet, that isn't luck, that's a full blown miracle and hard, dedicated work. God bless you guys and continue helping those that need your help. I would never recommend anyone but you. I believe God sent you all here Himself. You all are doing your jobs well. Thank you again and we love everyone of you! Always a friend,

WILLIAM FUNK

To the entire team at OFR, A heartfelt thanks for helping our family. It has been a rough year for us and we are so thankful that OFR is committed to helping OIF families get back on their feet. God bless you all!

THE LATHONS

Thank you so much for your call today. Your reassurance and willingness to help Vets in need because you want to and not because you have to is an amazing thing that is intangible and rare. May honor continue to know your deeds well.

David H

Thank you so much. Your organization is a God sent for Veterans. Although I’m in my darkest you have been an illuminating light. I truly appreciate Operation First Response....For a light of hope for all of us Veterans.
Sincerely,

PVT R

I would like to express my utmost gratitude for your organization's help. I was overwhelmed at the amazing care package that I received and how helpful it was. I moved to Massachusetts from Alabama. I lost everything I had and it created such a huge struggle for me. I managed to get a bus ticket here and with the help of you and the wonderful people who are part of your organization, I feel like there is hope again. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the clothes, financial assistance and love and care that was put into what you all do. It was by far the most uplifting experience I have had as of late. When I am up on my feet again I want to give back to those who are in a situation where we are starting over and we can sometimes feel hopeless. US Veterans are humbled and in awe of people like all of you.

Ashley C

I would like to thank Operation First Response in making it possible for me to spend Christmas with my family! This Christmas has been one of the most memorable holidays to date. This past year has been a long recovery, so having time to spend with the family was so incredible! Thank you and your staff and all the supporters in making this possible.

Theresa R

I want to thank you on behalf of the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System-Panama City Outpatient Clinic for helping one of our Vet's in an urgent situation after he lost electricity and water. Without the timely interventions of Operation First Response and Crystal Howard, in particular, this Vet would have been at risk of serious health consequences. Thank you.

Alan G

First and foremost, I would like to thank you once again from the bottom of my heart for assisting my son and I in our time of need. It is people just like yourself that make it worthwhile to go on! You’ll never know just what it means to my son. We hope and pray that you and everyone else involved at First Response have a very happy and Merry Christmas. Sincerely,

EDMUND RICE

The funny thing about pushing on, and trying to make it look easy, is that it is easily forgotten how difficult every day can be for us. We lost Jimmy Kalitz and we lost our light. People come and go. Most go, as the memory of that day fades. Some stay, and we love them for it. Operation First Response, Peggy Baker and Nick Constantino offer the consistent love, support, understanding, acknowledgement and remembrance that families like ours need to keep moving. We loved them when we were a complete family with Jimmy, and that love continues to grow. Some days it feels like our family will never be complete again. Then there are days, when we come together with this special group, or regular days when we hear from them on the phone or in a letter, that we realize we are, in fact, complete in a new way. We will be "always faithful" to Jimmy's memory, and to the work OFR does. We will "do something" to make a difference whenever we can. We are just one story of many, but "We are OFR."

Kelly T

Sarah Baker – Caseworker at OFR is a real “jewel”. She cares/supports her clients; she is very resourceful. I wish there were more people like her in the world.

THOMAS ELLIOTT

My most humble thanks and I'm very emotional due to class and dealing with emotions that have been both buried and avoided for so long. Thank you and your organization from the bottom of my heart. We Veterans have lost faith in civilians but you all have proved that to be so wrong today and to show this type of love is amazing. Have an amazing Thanksgiving and God bless.

Qahhar I

I am forever grateful to OFR for helping me in my time of need and in a timely manner. I was able to make payments on my unforeseen emergency repairs due to their financial assistance. Thank you so much for helping me. I searched a lot of places that advertise help for veterans and was turned away many many times because I would not qualify for their assistance due to their strict guidelines of their company. They made me feel like I wasn't worth their time and added to my already dire situation. OFR on the other was able to help me quickly and Sarah was so nice to me inviting me to events and other programs they have available. I thank God that there are people like you in this world.

Luis L

When you are thinking of donating to a charity that helps our Wounded, look no further. I have worked with this organization personally for years. Let me just tell you there might be bigger non-profits out there but you would be hard pressed to find another organization that cares as much as this one does. I can't tell you how many Soldiers and families that I know personally that have been helped. We need organizations like yours! Thank you for serving our community and doing so with such great compassion and integrity. You are simply amazing!

Katheryn L

Just to give you the backstory to how I got in touch with you…. I was sitting at my desk here at work and was discreetly attempting to make a payment arrangement with Georgia Power to keep our lights on in November. The agent on the phone was giving me the name of the United Way and I just kind of went through the motions with her over the phone as in “yes ma’am I understand I can contact them, but they always tell us that our income is slightly too high which is why we don’t qualify for any other governmental assistance.” She then went on to ask if myself or my husband was a veteran. I told her that my husband was. She said well, I don’t remember the organization name but a few days ago a some member of a veteran organization came in with the person listed on the account and paid a portion of their bill so you may want to look into that. For whatever reason, God spoke to me and I did it right then and there. That’s when I found Operation First Response and submitted our request. I really expected a firm “No” because he did not have a physical disability, even though his PTSD causes some pretty serious issues on daily basis. But that wasn’t the case. You guys welcomed us with open arms and I am just so thankful to God for you. So thankful. I hope you have a blessed 2016 as you have ended 2015 for us filled with hope, happiness, and a renewed faith in people who care for those who have served.

Danielle H

Just wanted to touch base with you and let you know again how much I appreciated your help and support of all veterans who served our country. PATRIOTIC AMERICANS like yourself and your organization are one of the reasons I/we take the oath to defend this country.... Cannot put into words how much your willingness and dedication to HELP has gave me the mental desire to continue to keep moving forward to the day I finally come "HOME" from the war....

Art S.

I received assistance today and I was overwhelmed with this blessing. Thank you so much for your help. I will never forget today. Operation First Response has renewed my faith in the good that other Americans possess. I will forever be grateful. Sincerely

JOSHUA DUBOIS

I wanted to thank you for the wonderful gift that Operation First Response has blessed us with. Your donation has allowed my small family to help with the deductible that we needed to pay for our new roof. I have been told that the roofing company will be able to start work next week and then we will have a lifetime roof on our home that will long last us. Your organization is definitely a life saver and you will never be forgotten for the generosity that you have shown. I pray that your organization will prosper and help other Veterans in need. Once again thank you for all that you have done and God's blessings to you and your organization.

Mick L

Bills and life sometimes completely overwhelm an already low and desparate veteran. Dealing with service related injuries and PTSD life can feel hopeless. So providing monetary support a veteran con concentrate on healing and being healthy physically and mentally. Thank you much. I was able to pay a few bills so the strain of life wasn't so overwhelming. Times are tough and I appreciate OFR help.

Jacqulyn M