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Tree? That’s just what then-Auxiliary President Kathy Bryan did. She erected an evergreen and decorated it with patches, insignia and stripes from all branches of the military. Bryan is a proud daughter and niece of WWII veterans, her father, Joe D. Bryan Sr., and uncle, James M. Bryan. “I look around and see so many people like my dad who have served their country,” she said, “and it seems like people just forget what they have done and what our young men and women are still doing for our freedom.” So her Auxiliary is now the sponsor of the Military Christmas Tree project, and it has taken off locally in a way similar to the popularity of the symbolic yellow ribbons


Texas Auxiliary Dresses Tree With Symbols of Respect

t’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas – with a twist – at Auxiliary 3903, Rosenberg, Texas. Can you imagine a Military Christmas

tied around trees. The Auxiliary’s tree also has yellow ribbons mixed in with angel ornaments and red, white and blue lights. The tree displays more than 200 patches, and counting. And it is meant to include not only VFW-eligible veterans but all military personnel. Bryan has gone to great lengths for the project, gathering patches at Army surplus stores, drawing media attention as well as responses from area officials and national legislators. Word of mouth, meet-the-candidate events, newspaper and television attention and Bingo games have elicited interest and donations of patches, including some from soldiers in Afghanistan. “There are so many of them who don’t get the honor they deserve,” Bryan said. “Yes, we have Veterans Day, but it should be year- round. That’s why we did this. And this tree will stay until all of our men and women are home.” n MS

Left to right: Auxiliary 3903 member Margie Dillon, Congressman Pete Olson and then-Auxiliary President Kathy Bryan pictured before the Military Christmas Tree of Post and Auxiliary 3903, Rosenberg, Texas.


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