Montgomery County couple prepares dozens of care packages for troops ahead of holidays

The donations will go to American troops who will be deployed over the holidays.

Beccah Hendrickson Image
Saturday, December 2, 2023
Montgomery County couple prepares dozens of care packages for troops ahead of holidays
Montgomery County couple prepares dozens of care packages for troops ahead of holidays

MERION STATION, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- A Montgomery County couple is sending dozens of care packages to troops for the holidays to make sure heroes deployed from home know someone is thinking about them.

On the first weekend in December, the inside of Sandy and Fred Klevan's home in Merion Station, Pennsylvania turns into an assembly line.

"So our living room has a lot of assorted different boxes in here," Sandy explained.

"These are all candy the kids got for Halloween," she said, pointing to one of the stations. "All of these have been donated from various sources."

The donations will go to American troops who will be deployed over the holidays.

"We have TastyKakes and intimates, things that make them think of home'" said Fred. "Especially during Christmas, when they miss their families the most."

Fred says he first got the idea for care packages in 2006 when he had a friend who was deployed.

"I contacted him and asked how can I support him. Seventeen years later, we're over 5,000 now," he said.

The effort has grown exponentially over the years.

"When Freddy asks for something, you don't say no," said Pam Pippett, one of a few dozen volunteers whom the Klevan's recruit from their neighborhood, each with their own reason to help.

"My father served, my husband's father served. It's just the right thing to do," said Pippett.

This year, the team of volunteers plans to pack over 100 boxes weighing approximately 40 pounds each.

"It will be a holiday treat for them because they'll get it before Christmas. It's kind of amazing how quickly they get to where we want them to go," said Mike Munger from Langhorne.

Not only are the soldiers getting snacks and toiletries, but they're also getting a heartfelt thank you. Fred writes letters to the troops and so does one elementary school class.

They're also giving out friendship bracelets to let the troops know they are appreciated back home.