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A Heartwarming Morning in January

The Forest Acres Quilting Club was once again honored to award Quilts of Valor to two worthy recipients on January 8, 2019 at Gold Crest Retirement Center in Adams. The two veterans, Paul Monroe and Jason Laflin, are residents of Gold Crest. The ceremony was held in the Activities Room several residents and family members of the recipients in attendance. The program began with some patriotic trivia led by one of the activities assistants.

Our portion of the program began with club member Lorna McMurray welcoming the audience and relating a bit of history regarding the National Quilts of Valor Foundation. She told about Blue Star mother, Catherine Roberts, who had a dream in 2003 when her son was deployed. In her dream she saw a soldier struggling through the night with his war demons. Next she saw him wrapped, comforted, and calmed by a quilt. Shortly after that she made the first Quilt of Valor. Sixteen years later over 10,000 members of the Quilts of Valor Foundation have awarded over 210,000 quilts.

A Quilt of Valor was first awarded to Paul Monroe who was drafted into the Army in 1959 and spent one and a half years serving as a military policeman in Meints, Germany. Upon returning to the United States, he re-enlisted and served an additional 4 1/2 years in the Army Reserves. Paul’s quilt was an Amish Rail Fence, the pattern of which was found in the February 2018 edition of American Patchwork and Quilting magazine. I stitched an all-over star pattern on this quilt using blue thread.

Jason Laflin was the next recipient of a Quilt of Valor. He enlisted in the Navy in 1992. His service included 6 months aboard the U.S.S. Saratoga Aircraft Carrier in the Mediterranean Sea where he loaded bombs and missiles onto F18 aircrafts to be used in the Gulf War. After being discharged from the Navy, Jason spent two more years with the Naval Reserves. His quilt was constructed by my mother. I then stitched an all-over star design using gold thread.

The program ended with the audience singing America the Beautiful accompanied by Jen Schuerman, Activities Director at Gold Crest. Delicious cookies frosted in patriotic designs were served to those in attendance.

With these quilts the Forest Acres Quilting Club has now awarded a total of 26 quilts - 21 to veterans in our area and five quilts that were awarded to veterans who participated in the all-female Honor Flight last September. We continue to work each week on more quilts for our area veterans as well as those that will be awarded to the Purple Heart veterans who will be participating in the upcoming Honor Flight in May.

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