From: Airman, To: Airman

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Stephan Coleman
  • 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
Deployments are hard on troops and on families. The separation from friends, family, and home, can take a toll on military personnel who are working to defend our nation.

Airman to Airman is a program that sends care packages from Keesler to deployed Airmen.

"It is dedicated to the belief that no Airman should feel alone or neglected on a deployment," said Airman 1st Class Katryn Booth, 81st Aerospace Medicine Squadron and founder of the group.

Packages may include requested items, snacks, photos or simply letters from squadrons, and are sent with money from donations and fund raising. The most recent flood of packages included letters written by kids from the youth center, said Booth.

The idea for the program came to her through social media.

"There was a security forces Airman who made a Facebook post back in January about missing family and feeling underappreciated," said Booth. "So I sent him and his team members a huge care package."

Booth has shared the idea with other Airmen, some on other bases, in an attempt to spread the network of continental United States Airmen to deployed Airmen.

"It's a community that can really take a life of its own," she said.

Many units send deployed members care packages already, but Airman to Airman is a support group based in the Keesler Airmen's Council.

"There are some Airmen who could be favored in their unit, or have a bigger family, and so they get more support," said Booth. "We want to make sure everybody gets the morale boost they may need."

The Facebook page creates a communication link for deployed Airmen and Keesler Airmen. As well as sharing wants and needs, Airmen are able to express their appreciation.

"It's awesome to get something in the mail when you least expect it," said Senior Airman Erik Taylor, a deployed Airman from the 81st Medical Support Squadron. "It's nice to be thought of."

The next care package shipments will be sent out at the end of August and November.
For more information, call Booth at 228-376-3163.