Ways to support veterans all year long

Four Corners Blue Star Mothers are asking for donations during the annual care package drive

Hannah Grover
Yellow ribbons in support of the military are tied onto a tree Thursday on Main Street in Farmington.

FARMINGTON — Those who drive or walk through downtown Farmington may notice a series of yellow ribbons tied around dozens of trees, each ribbon reading "until they all come home."

The ribbons are displayed through the efforts of the Four Corners Blue Star Mothers, an organization of mother whose children are serving in the military.

"We put out the yellow ribbons because basically that's how we can show support," said Diane McClelland, the group's president.

The ribbons are a year-round symbol of the community's support for the military. But there are also many other ways residents can support veterans and active military throughout the year and not just on Veterans Day.

This can be as simple as thanking a veteran for his or her service. Veterans often wear clothing with the name of the branch they served in, and McClelland encourages residents to thank veterans when they see them around town.

"They just need to know that they're supported," she said.

Residents can also show their support for veterans by donating money or resources to organizations that help military personnel.

Rita Gibson, a former president of Four Corners Blue Star Mothers, said organizations like Farmington's Elks Lodge 1747 maintain a fund to help the veterans. The lodge also hosts events throughout the year to raise money and awareness, including a Wounded Warriors Motorcycle Run.

Four Corners Blue Star Mothers have also partnered with Vertical Radio for the annual care package drive.The organization is asking for donations of gifts, like puzzle books, travel games and paperback novels, as well as food and hygiene items. The care packages will be sent to members of the military who are serving away from home during the holidays.

Items need to be dropped off by Friday at Vertical Radio, 2103 W. Main St., or at any of the Four Corners Community Bank locations in San Juan County.

Blue Star Mothers will also accept donations at a booth from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Wal-Mart, 4600 E. Main St. in Farmington. People can mail monetary donations to Four Corners Blue Star Mothers, P.O. Box 917, Flora Vista, NM 87415.

Hannah Grover covers Aztec and Bloomfield, as well as general news, for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652.

Yellow ribbons in support of the military are tied onto a tree Thursday on Main Street in Farmington.