Pelosi: ‘In Times of War and Peace, the USO Sends Care Packages to Our Men and Women in Uniform’

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Dr. Jill Biden joined Members of Congress for a United Service Organizations (USO) event this morning to assemble care packages for female soldiers deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.  The USO is a non-profit organization that delivers programs and services to support military personnel and their family members throughout the world. Below are the Speaker’s remarks:

“Thank you very much, Dr. Biden, for your kind words of introduction but more important than that, for the incredible contribution that you make as a Blue Star Mom.  It is my pleasure on behalf of our bipartisan group here to welcome you to the Capitol, to thank you for your leadership on this important day as we recognize the great contribution of women to the national security of our country.

“As you know, Dr. Biden is a mother and an educator, a Blue Star Mom.  She has worked tirelessly to help the loved ones of those who are serving in the military as well as those who serve.  Through her work with ‘Delaware Boots on the Ground,’ she visits bases here and in Germany, and it is hard to think of a more passionate advocate for our men and women in uniform and doing something about recognizing that than Dr. Biden.  So Dr. Biden, thank you.  You honor us with your presence.

“I want to join you in acknowledging the important work that USO has done for our troops, for our men and women in uniform, and for when they come home.  This event reflects the mission of the USO to bring our troops a little closer to home wherever they are, to boost the morale of our service members and to strengthen the bonds between our armed forces and the American people.

“In times of war and in times of peace, the USO sends care packages to the front lines to give to our men and women in uniform.  These contain practical items, as you know, small reminders of life here at home whether it is, well just odds and ends, I won’t go into them except to say for the first time in USO’s history, we are preparing packets specifically designed for our women in the military.  We will have some interesting things, cosmetics, lotions, lip moisturizers, some others we won’t go into right here.  Many of the women on the front lines requested something a little more personal and directed toward them, through our work here we are answering their call.

“Dr. Biden mentioned our women on the front line out there, and many of our colleagues here have the opportunity to visit them.  Year in and year out, in Afghanistan, Iraq, Germany, wherever they are deployed.  This year, I had the privilege of visiting Iraq on Mother’s Day, and we had interest from moms and grandmothers who were serving.  Grandmothers serving.  As a grandmother myself, I respected the stamina of what that required, but also the tremendous patriotism.  They know why they are there.  They are there to protect our great country, to make it the future better for our children.

“This is about the USO bringing us together — strengthening that relationship between those who serve and those who are at home.  We have close ties with the military families and Blue Star families and they told us recently of a survey that took that said that families of service people, 95 percent of them thought that most Americans did not have any idea of the contribution that is made by the families to the war effort.  Today, we specifically are talking about those in the service, but we also have to acknowledge the sacrifices made by their families.

“So in the spirit of the women and mothers in the military and the leadership of Dr. Biden and of Michelle Obama and their husbands — the President of the United States and the Vice President of the United States — in recognition of the tremendous work being done by the USO, let us salute Sloan Gibson of the USO for bringing us here today.”