WHITEFISH BAY -- This Veterans Day, one woman has made it her mission to bring joy to soldiers, before they become veterans with her organization called "Trees From Home."
"I opened it up and here was this red gaudy Christmas tree, but we loved it," Team Rubicon Veteran John Stuhlmacher said.
Inside the workshop in Whitefish Bay, dozens of volunteers make up the workforce behind "Trees From Home." A non-profit that aims to bring a slice of home to soldiers all over the world. John was the first soldier to receive a tree.
"I opened it up and here was this red gaudy Christmas tree, but we loved it," said Team Rubicon Veteran
said. "Had it set up, and it was just a little reminder of what we've got back home."
"When our son came home it was the only Christmas they had. The only color they had in a sea of tan and beige and that I needed to get my friends together and make a difference," Trees From Home Founder
It quickly blossomed into a major operation. Sending not just thousands of trees out to soldiers, but also cards for them to write on, toiletries, small toys, and other quality of life items.
"We send about 3,000 Christmas trees and goodie bags every year, and we're almost 20,000," Julie said.
The orders for 2017 have finished and are en route to a soldiers all over the world.
"We made a difference in their life. We've boosted their morale. It's really touching," Julie said.
A little tree, with a star on top. A little bit of home - a million miles away - showing you that this holiday - you're not alone. Again, the orders for this year are already complete. The group says starting January 1st, people can start placing orders for Christmas of 2018.