Navy Mom Stuffs Stockings to Give Sailors a Taste of Home

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After collecting about 500 pounds of Halloween candy to send to her daughter’s soon-to-be deployed ship, a Navy mom from South Jersey has decided to put together something special for our sailors.

“It’s great that they’re serving their country, but it’s sad they’re so lonely and alone at Christmas,” said Gina Bowne, founder of Stockings for Sailors.

She's no Kris Kringle, just a proud Navy mom. 

Bowne is busy getting ready to stuff hundreds of holiday stockings that will be shipped to the U.S.S. Carl Vinson, where her 19-year-old daughter is currently serving.

“My own daughter [will] be heartbroken that she’s not going to have family home with her at Christmas," said Bowne. "But if she can have a little piece of that, it just makes it a little easier to get by.” 

Her daughter Gianna enlisted in the Navy in July, soon after she graduated high school. 

Before she's deployed in January, her mother wants to stuff as many stockings as she can for her daughter and fellow sailors.

“There are 7,000 sailors on that particular ship,” said Bowne. “If I could get one for every one of them, I would send every single one a stocking.”

But in order to stuff thousands of stockings, she needs thousands of items.

“Anything trial size as far as shampoo [and] conditioner” said Bowne. “Anything health and beauty and snacks. Dried fruits, Slim Jims, beef jerky, things like that — things they can snack on, and things that will last them a little bit of time where they won’t go bad.” 

It’s great that they’re serving their country, but it’s sad they’re so lonely and alone at Christmas.

The Navy family has a collection box right on their front porch, and another one at the Runnemede Police Station to give easy access for the public.

Every single item collected will be shipped out to give our sailors a little taste of home for the holidays.

“It’s a hard thing to be away from your family," said Bowne. "So if [there's] anything I can do to make it a little easier on them, it makes me feel good.” 

Last month, Bowne collected and sent over almost 500 pounds of candy for the sailors. 

Home in Camden County or miles away at sea, the mother’s main goal is to put a smile on the faces of our heroes.

Related: Project Thanksgiving Now Collecting Turkeys

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