Send Some Love to the Troops For Valentine’s Day

Hey, kids! Valentine’s Day is coming up, so the USO would like to give you a chance to send some love to our troops.

Download and print the pdf of the USO Valentine’s Day coloring sheet here.

After you’re done coloring, either scan or take a digital picture of your work and post it onto our Facebook page,http://www.facebook.com/theUSO. We’ll choose the best coloring sheets and will showcase them in a photo gallery on our website and on Facebook.

Enjoy! Happy (early) Valentine’s Day!

This special coloring sheet is brought to you by cartoonist Paul Boscacci, the creator of the “Fort Knox” comic strip. You can view all of the “Fort Knox” strips at www.gocomics.com/fortknox. Join the rest of our military family fans of “Fort Knox” on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fortknoxcomic.

LRMC Staff Appreciation Day

On 21 January, 2011 the USO partnered with the Wounded Warrior Project to host “LRMC Staff Appreciation Day” at Heaton Auditorium on Landstuhl Regional Medical Center. The medical center is often the first stop for the wounded from war zones and has treated more than 6,000 patients.

The event consisted of a delicious catered Italian lunch and two comedy shows in the evening. During the lunch, live music was performed by the rock band Pierce with some participation from Adam Duritz of the band Counting Crows. Col. John Cho, LRMC Commander, would break in every 20-30 minutes to thank the medical staff for their efforts. Col. Cho would also introduce two wounded warriors, Dan Nevins and Shilo Harris, who shared their stories of survival and personally thanked all the medical staff. Harris, now a retired staff sergeant, had been burned badly in a roadside bomb blast in Iraq on Feb. 19, 2007. “It has been an emotional roller coaster,” he said. “Being back here, there are no words to describe it. Every time I talk to somebody, I just want to hug them.”

Nevins, also a retired staff sergeant, had both legs amputated after a roadside bomb blast in Iraq on Nov. 10, 2004.He initially thought his life “was over,” but now skis and snowboards and hopes to be an inspiration for other wound troops. “The staff here never gets to see the fruits of their labor,” he said. “I represent the thousands of injured troops who have been saved, thanks to them.”

In the evening, comedians Jeffrey Ross, Sarah Tiana, Colin Kane, Stewart Stone, and Robert Klein, along with Adam Duritz, put on two truly outstanding comedy and musical shows that entertained over 350 medical staff members. The incredible energy at this event was only exceeded by the emotion of the persons that particpated.

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A USO Birthday Wish

As the USO prepares to celebrate the big 7-0 this February 4, we’d like to hear from you! Tell us your fondest memories of your experiences with the USO, include a photo if you’d like, and you may see your name in our magazine – ON★PATROL – or on one of our websites. Be sure to share your story on USO.org by January 24.

Maybe while volunteering you met your current spouse, or perhaps you met Jay Leno when his tour came to your base! We look forward to hearing from you and what you remember about us over the last 70 years.

USO tour featuring recording artists Joan Jett and Kellie Pickler

WHEN: Winter 2011

WHERE: Middle East (Due to security reasons, the countries and tour dates cannot be released at this time.)

WHY: Hard rocker Joan Jett and country music singer/songwriter Kellie Pickler will team-up for a week-long USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour and deliver a host of performances to troops serving overseas in the Middle East. In addition to entertaining service men and women, the musical powerhouses will sign autographs, participate in meet and greets and extend America’s support.

No strangers to body armor, tanks or the desert, this trip marks the 61st visit to a military installation for Jett and the fourth USO tour for Pickler. Trekking across the globe to lift the spirits of troops, together the duo have boosted the morale of tens of thousands of service heroes serving in Iraq, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Kosovo, Germany, Japan and Pakistan.