Last updated: August 22. 2013 7:52PM - 34 Views

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Efforts like those of the employees of the St. Rita's Wound Care Clinic often go unnoticed — by most of us anyway. However, the gift Army Sgt. Jerad Hanefeld presented this week shows that those serving in this country's military never overlook the care they receive from home.Hanefeld on Monday presented to the clinic staff an American flag that flew over the Army base in Afghanistan where he was stationed for seven months. Hanefeld is part of the 319th Agriculture Business Development Team, a group helping transition Afghan farming practices. Hanefeld's mother-in-law, Rhonda Schulte, works in the St. Rita's Wound Care Clinic. She suggested to co-workers this past Christmas they adopt Hanefeld and his company.Schulte and about a dozen co-workers made care packages for the soldiers, sending them everything from beef jerky and snacks to razors and tooth brushes. Employees there contributed to the care packages instead of exchanging Christmas gifts.Hanefeld's visit Monday demonstrated the care sent from Lima was felt and appreciated some 7,000 miles away. Hanefeld made the visit to St. Rita's while he is home for only 15 days from Afghanistan, demonstrating how important the care packages were. “It really is something they appreciate. Some of the guys, they don't really have family to send things, so this is pretty special,” he told The Lima News.The military mission in Afghanistan is very much in question right now. The capture and killing of al-Qaida mastermind Osama bin Laden has many — including this editorial page — questioning the ongoing U.S. presence there. Regardless of whether any such mission is right or wrong, those carrying it out never hesitate. They do the jobs they signed up to do — usually in remarkably admirable fashion. Approaching a decade in Afghanistan, though, the U.S. military presence there isn't always front page news. Here at home, we might forget the dangers our service personnel are constantly in. You can bet those serving never forget — and that they never take for granted the care and support they receive from back home.


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