Tuesday, 16 April 2013

All About Wounded Warrior Quilts

As we have so many new members I thought it was a good time to re-explain what 
Wounded Warrior Quilts 
are all about.  

In April last year, one of the chaplains suggested that we send some quilts to be held in the hospitals in Tarin Kowt and Kandahar.  These quilts would then be taken by the medevac nurse when they accompany any of our Heroes who are injured seriously enough to need to be transfered to Germany, or in fact, if it is considered appropriate under any other circumstances by the relevant commanding officer or the chaplain.  

One of the reasons I started Aussie Heroes was because I heard about a soldier who received a Hero Quilt in Germany.  I was so pleased to know that the Americans had been so generous to him but so shamed that there was nothing there for him from Australia.  I have since met that particular soldier and I am SO PROUD to say that he still has his Hero Quilt but he also now has one of ours and it means a lot to him.  It goes with him when he has to go to hospital and his wife recently told me that she would walk into their living room in summer, on those 40degree days, and there he would be with the aircon on his quilt.

So, how do things work with Wounded Warrior Quilts.  Firstly anyone can make one.  They are exactly the same size as the normal Aussie Hero Quilts and they have exactly the same label.  The only difference is that the quilt must be very Australian and once finished they are to be sent to me to wait till they need to be dispatched.  If I hear someone has been injured I immediately attempt to confirm that a quilt was passed on.  If it has then a replacement quilt goes in the mail ASAP.  I keep them here as all quilts must come to Sydney first by mail and I try to get the replacements to Dubai as soon as possible.  No point sending them from Perth or South Australia and adding extra days to the trip.  

If for some reason the injured member did not pass through either Kandahar or Tarin Kowt, these days I know enough to contact the chaplain that I liaise with and ask him to pass my details to the relevant chaplain and I send a quilt to that chaplain so that he can pass the quilt on when he visits the soldier.

I try to keep four or five WWQs here at any time.  At the moment, I think I only have one, maybe two on hand.  I would love it if someone wanted to make one and send it to me but please just check with me first so that I don't get too many at once.  

This quilt, made by Claire, is the quilt that became the first WWQ.  


And the rest of these are the WWQs that have been sent so far but we have no idea which ones have been handed on and which are still waiting.












 There have been quite a few Red. White and Blue quilts made as they are the colours of the flag but there is nothing wrong with Green and Gold also. Personally I love to see a southern cross or a flag on the WWQs  or maybe some roos.   That is just my feeling but I love the WWQs to be unmistakenly AUSTRALIAN.  The very first Aussie Hero once said to me that if, heaven forbid, he should end up in Germany, to wake up under a quilt with a southern cross on it or the flag, would be so comforting.  that has always stayed with me.

So, that is what a Wounded Warrior Quilt is.  If I have left you with any questions please let  me know.  Oh before I forget - next month's BOM blocks will be dedicated to Wounded Warrior Quilts so we will be asking that the blocks include some Aussie fabric and we are going to ask for blocks in Red, White and Blue.  So start collecting your fabrics.  

And to finish off tonight, how about a little Grati-Tuesday!

Hi Jan-Maree,

I would like to pass on my thanks to the fabulous work you do in organising the fantastic artwork your ladies have done, and continue to do for those deployed servicemen and women. It is heartwarming to know there are people out there who have us in their thoughts. One of these outstanding ladies is Deb B. Through adversity, Deb has crafted me a personalised quilt that I will cherish long after I return from Afghanistan. Deb themed it around my Scottish background and took great pride in making sure I was happy. I was even sent some Scottish shortbread and Scots Heritage magazines. The quilt will take pride of place hanging at my bar and will be a great conversation starter. Not only about my time over here, but to tell the story of the work you have done. Your ladies artwork will be around a lot longer than our commitments around the world. Please pass on my thanks to Deb and her husband Jim for their thoughts and hard work. Also find attached a picture of myself piping the unit on Christmas Day.


Hi Amy

My name is XXXXX and I am a medic in the Army.  I want to thank you very much for making the quilt and laundry bag. It is the best present I have received over here and was just what I needed to brighten my bed space up.

You picked my favourite colours, of pink, orange and yellow and I absolutely love it. I have attached a couple of photos with the quilt on my bed.

Thank you so much for taking the time to make a stranger an awesome bed quilt. You guys are doing a fabulous job and we really appreciate it.

Good luck with school and keep up the quilting. You have a great talent.

 Thank you very much



This fellow received one of our BOM quilts

Good morning Jan-Maree,  
Yes, we have been busy.   Your quilt and the laundry bag from another lady (Julie Ann) were waiting for me when I arrived, thanks to some forward thinking from one of my crew. Both are in use and will be returning back with me.   I first came to Afghanistan in Mar '06. Every minute of my time here has been a rewarding experience, and knowing there are the a small number of people that both know and appreciate what we're doing here makes it even better.
I sent the lady who made my laundry bag an email some time ago expressing my gratitude. And I once again express my thanks to you - keep up the great work.
Yours sincerely.


Hi Joan and Rob,

Just to let you know that I've just received your box containing five laundry bags. I've already passed them to one of our clerks for distribution to some of the soldiers. I noticed that you'd included a postcard with each bag but I should warn you that not all the soldiers are perhaps as good as they ought to be about writing to thank you, so please accept this email as thanks on their behalf.

We are now very much looking forward to the end of our deployment and are starting to count down the weeks until our return to Australia. As always, the bags add some colour to a place which can be very grey and monotonous in tone, so thank you for your efforts on our behalf: I can assure you that they are greatly appreciated.

Kind regards,


And the following is another of our BOM quilts and this message and photo were posted on facebook.

Wow!! I have been sent this beautiful quilt and laundry bag. The quilt has a Pegasus on it because I am a member of 5 Avaiation and my laundry bag has my initials. I am so deeply touched and thankful for this beautiful gift. Thank you!!!


Hi to all the great people at home who are supporting the troops that are deployed away in operations. I received my lovely quilt and laundry bag today and I absolutely love them. A big huge thankyou to all. And a special thankyou to Mrs Margaret R. I send my best wishes to you all. Xx 





Hi Julie Ann,

I just want to say a big thank to you and your team for providing your time and efforts in providing us with your gifts.. Receiving mail here is an exciting time of day and brings moral and smiles from everyone on Op Slipper.. We all appreciate your  organisation and all think is such a rewarding organisation to be a part of..

Thank you again, and we appreciate your efforts and support.. 

Till next time......keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

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